FMC dismisses probe of California port clean truck programs

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The Federal Maritime Commission has filed a motion to dismiss its investigation commenced last September into certain aspects of the Clean Truck Programs at the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, citing changed circumstances as the reason.

Administrative Law Judge Clay Guthridge on July 30 certified the motion to the full FMC for decision. If FMC grants the motion, FMC’s investigation of the CTPs will be over.

“The concerns originally raised by the CTF [Clean Truck Fee] exemptions, the concession applications and POLA’s incentive program now appear in a different light after the actual implementation of those programs and the modifications and adjustments to them by the ports,” FMC’s motion stated. “Those concerns have not been borne out after several months of experience in the administration of the ports’ CTPs.”

“This is great news,” says Geraldine Knatz, Port of Los Angeles executive director. “Having all FMC matters behind us will allow us to better focus on our business matters in the coming months.”

FMC first requested dismissal of the case in a filing in mid-June in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia on April 16 had upheld the California ports’ CTP, calling it an “… ambitious, multifaceted program to reduce high levels of air pollution while also striving to improve the ports’ safety and security.” Judge Richard Leon rejected FMC’s request for a preliminary injunction against the Port of Los Angeles and Port of Long Beach CTPs, calling FMC’s arguments “weak” and “