• Henry Seaton

Congress pushes off final action on government funding

As expected, Congress avoided a government-wide shutdown by continuing funding through December 9 – a month beyond the election. For the most part, any remaining significant legislative issues will be resolved as part of a final fiscal 2017 appropriations law. For motor carriers, still pending are a possible resolution of the hours-of-service restart provision; a prohibition on state regulation of driver meal and rest breaks; and a measure to block FMCSA from revising carrier safety fitness determinations rules pending the ongoing study on the Safety Measurement System and FMCSA’s subsequent corrective action plan.

The Senate and House versions of the DOT funding bill both address the HOS restart issues, albeit in different ways. The House bill, which was approved by the Appropriations Committee but not passed by the full House, included language on driver meal and rest breaks and on the SFD rule. The Senate bill also includes language that would mandate a final rule on speed limiters. OOIDA recently asked the Senate Appropriations Committee to give up on that provision as part of the final negotiations on government funding.

Avoid legal pitfalls

Rules of the Road offers practical help on avoiding legal pitfalls in working with customers, independent contractors, insurers, factoring companies, etc.

Many serious legal risks will go unnoticed unless you are watching for them. Don't take chances.

 Although successful food haulers already employ the common sense steps required in FDA's new transportation rule, declaring your compliance can help you stay competitive for spot-market freight.