SSRS ends in ’06, UCRS expected to start in ’07

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Carriers won’t pay fees into the Single State Registration System next year. Congress adjourned this month without extending it, so the system will be repealed Jan. 1, as it was scheduled to be under federal law. The new Unified Carrier Registration System will not be ready in January, but states will be able to collect fees under it once it is in place, according to the American Trucking Associations.

Bob Pitcher, vice president of state laws for the ATA, says many states had used SSRS money for matching funds, but some had put it into the general fund. Under the UCRS, states must use the amount gathered for highway safety or enforcement. The UCRS was established in the long-term federal highway reauthorization, passed in 2005, according to information distributed by the UCRS board.

Under SSRS, only regulated for-hire motor carriers had been covered. But the UCRA requires all motor carriers to register with the U.S. Department of Transportation — including private, for-hire and exempt carriers, as well as brokers, freight forwarders and leasing companies.

For motor carriers, the UCRA fees are based only on the total number of commercial motor vehicles operated. Purely intrastate motor carriers are not subject to UCRA, but they must pay UCRA fees if a state participating in UCRA elects to extend the requirements of UCRA to its intrastate carrier population.

Carriers, freight forwarders, leasing companies and brokers based in Canada or Mexico that operate in U.S. interstate or international commerce are subject to the UCRA.