On June 22, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin signed into law a bill that makes the state compliant with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Improvement Act of 1999. The act requires more vehicle and driver inspections, stronger enforcement measures against violators and stronger commercial driver’s license testing and recordkeeping.
State Rep. Kyle Johansen, R-Ketchikan, House Transportation Committee chairman, sponsored the bill, which took effect July 1. “This bill also makes good business sense,” Johansen says. “Another penalty the state and the trucking industry were facing was the loss of the ability to issue commercial driver’s licenses for driving between Alaska and another state or country.”
Federal officials notified the state that it was out of compliance and facing severe penalties, including a loss in federal highway construction funds.