Schwarzenegger again terminates owner-operator bill

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For the second time since 2005, California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has vetoed a bill that would grant collective bargaining rights to port owner-operators. Schwarzenegger vetoed SB 1213 on Sept. 29, saying it was identical to the legislation he vetoed last year.

“While I understand and support the desire of the bill’s proponents to improve the economic clout of port owner-operator drivers, the provisions of this bill likely violate federal antitrust law and will result in many unintended consequences,” he said.

The state Senate passed the bill 47-28 on Aug. 17 after the state House approved it 23-13. Schwarzenegger, who is running for re-election in November, is a Republican; both houses of the state Legislature are majority Democrat.

The California Trucking Association opposed the bill, saying it conflicted with federal law. “Congestion at port complexes is the root cause of low profitability for motor carriers and owner-operators,” the association stated on its website. “Eliminating congestion will bring profitability to both the motor carrier and owner-operator, and solve the environmental and community concerns with public health and quality of life.”