New carrier registration system passes review

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The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is one step closer to establishing a new Unified Registration System.

The White House Office of Management and Budget has reviewed the URS final rule and returned its recommendations to the federal trucking regulator on Aug. 12. When the plan was submitted in February, FMCSA said it expected to publish the regulation within a week following OMB clearance.

The online URS is intended to streamline the existing registration process and serve as a clearinghouse for information on motor carriers, brokers, freight forwarders and others required to register with the Department of Transportation.

It will replace the agency’s current registration systems and will require those under the agency’s jurisdiction to register and provide a biennial update. The agency has determined the total net societal benefits of the rule to be $19.5 million and the total societal costs to be $26.5 million.

The new system implements statutory provisions of the ICC Termination Act (1995) and SAFTEA-LU (2005).

FMCSA published an advance notice of proposed rulemaking in 1996, a notice of proposed rulemaking in 2005 and a supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking in 2011. The agency had anticipated publishing the final rule last December, but encountered issues requiring further analysis.

In comments submitted for that supplemental notice, the American Trucking Associations took particular exception to the 30-page MCSA-1 registration form, saying it had “extremely serious concerns.” ATA said the form was “too long and involved” with “ambiguous or misleading” instructions.