ATA ‘clearly skeptical’ of DOT’s ‘11th hour’ research
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration said last month it would not be able to meet a court-negotiated July 26 deadline to issue its final hours-of-service rule after it reopened the comment period to allow for review and discussion of new studies and its possible consideration of their findings in the development of the final rule.
FMCSA on May 6 announced that it had placed four additional documents in the public docket of its December 2010 notice of proposed rulemaking on hours of service and that it was reopening the NPRM’s comment period for 30 days for discussion related only to the new documents. The deadline to submit comments was June 9.
FMCSA also advised the public of an adjustment to the rulemaking schedule previously agreed to in litigation before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (Case No. 09-1094). Pursuant to an Oct. 26, 2009 agreement between Public Citizen, other petitioners and FMCSA, the agency was to publish a final rule within 21 months of the date of the settlement agreement.
FMCSA said the extra comment period for the four additional documents would require additional time that was not envisioned in 2009 and that it would be unable to publish a final rule by the previously agreed-upon date of July 26, 2011. The agency said it had advised petitioners of the delay to the rulemaking schedule.
Bill Graves, president and chief executive officer of the American Trucking Associations, said his group was “intrigued” by FMCSA’s “unusual announcement” and was “clearly skeptical of new research that has been discovered or generated by DOT (the U.S. Department of Transportation) at the ‘11th hour.’ ”
Meanwhile, ATA’s National Tank Truck Carriers division announced its support for mandatory electronic logging devices for documenting hours-of-service compliance. NTTC says members voted to support the electronic logging mandate at its summer membership meeting last July but that it withheld issuance of any public proclamation pending any related developments in the hours-of-service rulemaking.
* The American Trucking Associations supports the efforts of the Obama administration to reimplement a cross-border trucking pilot program with Mexico, but called on regulators to address several concerns, including a proposal to purchase electronic onboard recorders for Mexican carriers and how the United States and Mexico will ensure fair and equal access to Mexico for American carriers.
* The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration extended until June 30, 2012, the compliance date of its final rule to require a driver-vehicle inspection report for nondefective intermodal equipment to provide sufficient time to address petitions from both the Ocean Carrier Equipment Management Association and the Institute of International Container Lessors to rescind the mandate.
* YRC Worldwide Inc. entered into agreements with key stakeholders for a restructuring plan that would infuse $100 million in new capital from senior secured lenders in exchange for company shares, leaving existing shareholders with about 2.5 percent of the company’s common stock.
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