The House and Congress reached an agreement on a 27 month transportation bill which President Barack Obama signed into law on Friday 7/6/12. The bill extends transportation spending through September 2014. The bill was agreed on just before the expiration on June 30th. This was the ninth temporary extension that expired in September 2009. Bill funding would include $52,2 billion for the fiscal year 2013 and $52.95 billion for the fiscal year of 2014.
The major highlights of the bill include :
- The broker/forwarder surety bond requirement is $75,000. This goes into effect one year from enactment.
- A motor carrier cannot re-broker freight without proper broker/broker authority and bond.
- The bill removes language the Senate had included regarding CSA. This allows the industry a clean field in addressing CSA and Safety Fitness Determination with the FMCSA.
- The FMCSA will develop a rule within a year to require electronic logging devices on trucks to track drivers hours of service.
- A field study on the 34-hour restart regulation on the hours of service rule FMCSA published in December.
- The Transportation Department will produce inventories of available safe parking along highways for truckers.
- The bill direct the DOT to develop a national freight strategic plan.
- A federal study on the effects of trucks on highways. 80,000 pound limits versus 100,000 pound limits on various state roads.
- The House-Senate did drop a provision to slow down highway privatization and tolling.
- Block publication of a rule on hazardous materials tanker “wetline” for up to two years.