Coercion Rulemaking

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has released the final rule for the, “Prohibiting Coercion of Commercial Motor Vehicle Drivers” rulemaking. TIA filed comments to the notice of proposed rulemaking that was posted in the Federal Register on May 13, 2014. An entity found guilty of coercion could face a $16,000 fine per incident. The final rule became effective on January 29, 2016. Many of the TIA comments were considered and amendments were made to the Final Rule based on the feedback TIA provided, but some concerns remain. Read more

CSA Reform

The “Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act” or FAST Act (Transportation Bill) contains extensive reform language dealing with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) Compliance, Safety, and Accountability (CSA) initiative. A major provision within the CSA reform package of the deals, removes from public view all information regarding analysis of violations, crashes in which a determination is made that the motor carrier or commercial motor vehicle driver is not at fault, alerts, or the relative percentile for each BASIC until corrective action is taken. All this information will be removed from public view within one day of signing this report into law. With that being said, all inspection and violation information submitted to FMCSA by law enforcement and inspectors along with out-of-service rates, and “absolute measures will remain publicly available.   

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SFD Rulemaking

On March 22, 2017, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced in the Federal Register its notice of withdrawal of the January 21, 2016 notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) on Motor Carriers Safety Fitness Determination (SFD). The SFD would have revised the methodology for issuance of a safety fitness determination for motor carriers. The new methodology would have determined when a motor carrier is not fit to operate commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) in or affecting interstate commerce based on the carrier’s on-road safety data; an investigation; or a combination of on-road safety data and investigation information.

The Agency announces through this notice in the Federal Register that it awaits the results of the National Academy of Sciences correlation study, as required by the FAST Act, based on that report the Agency will assess whether, and, if so, what corrective actions are advisable, and complete additional analysis before determining whether further rulemaking action is necessary to revise the SFD process.

TIA has been a supporter of the SFD rulemaking because it cleared up how safety ratings for motor carriers are presented to the public, and removed the confusion and liability traps that surround the four-tiered rating system. The entities that hire motor carriers, like 3PLs and shippers, need a clear-cut line to determine which carriers are safe to use and which carriers are not. 

Sanitary Transport of Food

As the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) continues to develop and implement rules that will ultimately increase traceability and safety of the food Americans consume from the farm to the fork, the Sanitary Transportation of Food final rule that is legally obligated to be released by March 31, 2016 is one rule 3PLs should be concerned with as they could be included as a responsible party under the definition of a shipper. Even though the final rule has to be released on March 31, 2016 there will be a year or two implementation period which follows. TIA will follow the final rule closely and will provide detailed summaries when released.      Read more

Detention and Demurrage

TIA has joined with industry partners and national organizations in considering how to address the issue of increasing penalties for detention and demurrage at U.S. ports.  This issue has become an increasing burden following the congestion that was experienced at West Coast ports in early 2015, and costs are being unnecessarily pushed onto shippers and carriers.

While every participant in the supply chain has a responsibility to strive for efficiency and speed, there is also a need for regulatory intervention at times when a final judgment needs to be made on what trade practices are fair and reasonable between those parties.  TIA will carefully examine all options for reaching a fair and satisfactory conclusion so that TIA members can serve their customers and move their goods without unnecessary delays and unnecessary costs.

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Department of Labor

In a dynamic industry with many different employment and contracting models, TIA works hard to provide the latest information on U.S. labor law compliance and proposals to update those regulations.  The notable examples are NLRB and the proposal to increase the salary threshold for workers who were previously considered exempt from mandatory overtime under the Fair Labor Standards Act.

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URS

On January 17, 2017, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has published in the Federal Register a notice and temporary Final Rule on the Unified Registration System (URS) Essentially, the Agency is announcing that it is suspending its previous URS regulations requiring existing interstate motor carriers, freight forwarders, brokers, freight forwarders, IEPs, hazardous material safety permit (HMSP) applicants, and cargo tank facilities under FMCSA jurisdiction to submit required registration and biennial update information to the Agency using the URS. During this suspension, entities needing to file will follow the same procedures and forms used to submit information to FMCSA as they do today. 

Delegation to Cuba

In March 2016, twenty one members of TIA traveled to Havana for TIA’s first-ever International Logistics Delegation.  After over fifty years, the relationship between the U.S. and Cuba is finally thawing.  As a result, one of the most populous nations in the Caribbean, at a critical strategic location adjacent to an expanded Panama Canal, will be open for business soon.

TIA’s delegation experienced firsthand the state of infrastructure that will support economic growth in Cuba for decades to come, and learned from officials and experts about what changes will come first.  The visit was a tremendous opportunity for TIA to be represented by a diverse group of its membership.