Following the conclusion of a three-year pilot program designed to evaluate the safety of Mexican trucks on U.S. highways, the United States Department of Transportation  (USDOT) has decided to open its roads to that country’s freight carriers.  The decision by USDOT ends  a controversy that has raged for more than a decade since the passage of the North American Free Trade Agreement in 1993.

Ken Gilliland

In December, Congress passed and President Obama signed legislation that kept the government operating into the new year.  The $1.1 trillion omnibus funding bill also contained changes to the U.S Department of Transportation’s Hours of Service (HOS) rules for commercial drivers that went into effect on July 1, 2013.  HOS rules dictate operational and safety guidelines for drivers.

Ken Gilliland

At the behest of both parties, a federal mediator has been brought in to assist with brokering a deal between ILWU dockworkers and the employer Pacific Maritime Association (PMA) counterparts.  Ongoing contract disputes between the sides have resulted in severe bottlenecks for both importers and exporters in the Ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles.  Several Western Growers members have been affected by the work slowdowns, jeopardizing deliveries of fresh produce and other commodities.

Ken Gilliland

The government funding bill currently before Congress has revived a long-running debate over how many hours truck drivers can spend on the road.  Lawmakers included language in the $1.1 trillion omnibus funding bill that blocks U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) regulations implemented in 2013 designed to relax driver scheduling regulations and prevent driver fatigue.

Ken Gilliland

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