Rep. Brian Babin (R-Tex.) withdrew a proposal to stop the implementation of the FMCSA’s ELD mandate just in time to submit another. Rep. Babin is part of the U.S. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and the Highways and Transit Subcommittee. The new proposal was added to a 2018 House funding bill. The new amendment would still delay the ELD mandate by two years and has 43 co-sponsors. The amendment is is part of the overall funding bill that needs to be approved by September 30th to avoid a government shutdown.
It is unclear why the old proposal was withdrawn, but for the 24 hours between the withdrawal and the new submission, many were assuming that the ELD mandate would continue to go on as planned. But now the provision is deeply dependent on the rest of the bill. Tied up with this bill is President Trump’s need to gain funding for a wall bordering Mexico. He has threatened to let the government shut down if provisions for that funding are not provided.
At the time of the original amendment, Rep. Babin stated, “While technology like ELD’s have great promise, I didn’t come to Washington to force those ideas on small businesses – and neither did President Trump. If trucking companies want to continue implementing and using ELD’s, they should go right ahead. But for those who don’t want the burden, expense and uncertainty of putting one of these devices into every truck they own by the end of the year, we can and should offer relief.”
Though there is support for the amendment from the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA), both the FMCSA and the American Trucking Associations support ELD implementation by December 18th. And with the recent news that the CVSA will phase-in implementation of the out of service stipulation of the ELD rule, it is likely that the FMCSA’s mandate will move forward. We’ll keep you updated as news continues to unfold.
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