CVSA Testifies at House Hearing on HOS Rule
On June 18, CVSA President Mark Savage, of the Colorado State Patrol, testified before the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee’s Subcommittee on Highways and Transit on the coming changes to hours-of-service (HOS) requirements. The panel also included:
- FMCSA Administrator Ferro
- Joan Claybrook, Consumer Co-Chair, Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety
- Steve Williams, Chairman & CEO, Maverick USA, Inc.; on behalf of the American Trucking Associations
- Edward Stocklin, President, Stocklin Trucking LLC; on behalf of the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association
- Jeffrey Dean Hinkle, Transportation Manager, Chandler Concrete Company, Inc.; on behalf of the National Ready Mixed Concrete Association
In his remarks, Mr. Savage expressed concern that some of the new provisions will be difficult to effectively enforce, particularly without the use of electronic logging devices and requirements for supporting documents on the vehicle. The hearing lasted two and a half hours, and much of the testimony focused on the impact to industry and the challenges the new rules present.
Testimony for each of the witnesses, as well as an archived video of the hearing, can be found here.
House and Senate Move Forward with FY14 Funding Bills
Earlier this week, the House Appropriations Subcommittee responsible for transportation approved an appropriations bill for the Department of Transportation. The bill was approved quickly, by voice vote, and now goes to the full Appropriations Committee for consideration. That session is scheduled for Wednesday, June 26. Keeping with the House theme of reduced spending, the funding levels, overall, in the bill are low. However, the proposal fully funds the FMCSA/MCSAP budget at MAP-21 levels. The majority of the cuts are to transit programs and major infrastructure grant programs. The bill does include a $95 million rescission of unspent MCSAP and National Motor Carrie Safety program funds which FMCSA has lost authority to dispense because funds were not spent within the allotted timeframe.
Meanwhile, the Senate Appropriations Committee has released its spending overview document, which tells each subcommittee how much funding, overall, they have to work with. It is then the subcommittee’s responsibility to allocate those funds to the programs under their jurisdiction. While the subcommittees have not yet released their proposals, it is clear that the House and Senate will be at odds over the appropriations measures, given that the Senate’s overall figures are higher than current spending levels, rather than lower.
It remains to be seen whether or not the two chambers will be able to find common ground on the funding issue. If they cannot, it is likely that we will see another series of continuing resolutions in FY14.