Below are new resources and guidance documents that the Department of Labor has placed online for the new laws that have been enacted during phase 2 of the coronavirus relief efforts.
The Commercial Vehicle Saftey Alliance (CVSA) just announced that they will be delaying the International Road Check until a later date due to concerns over COVID-19. Thank you, Kenny Lund, for starting this movement!
Secondly, early this morning, the Senate agreed on a package that will likely pass this afternoon, remaining on if the House will take it up. The House could do it by unanimous consent (UC), but rumors are circling that the New York delegation could oppose a UC. Then setting up a situation in which House Members would have to come back to Washington and take a roll call vote on the package. Stay tuned for more details.
As TIA continues to monitor the situation surrounding COVID-19 and it’s impact on the 3PL and transportation industries, here is your Morning Update for March 25. As a reminder, you can find all the latest information, resources, guidance, and news from TIA’s COVID-19 Response Center.
OPERATIONAL NEEDS SURVEY RESULTS:
We had 126 members respond to the quick survey. Here’s what you reported:
Regarding employees, 17% of respondents said they were continuing to hire quality staff, 55% reported that they’re delaying hiring new staff or contractors, and only 25% said they would be reducing staff.
Regarding your business, 43% of respondents said they would seek financial guidance, 26sai% said they would seek legal advice, 21% said they would seek to reassess their insurance policies, and 53% said they would be adjusting their business plan.
60% of respondents said they were communicating more frequently with your customers and 43% said they were looking to provide their customers with specific resources to help them deal with issues surrounding COVID.
29% of respondents said they would utilize their TIA membership more, and 24% said they would assist TIA’s Advocacy efforts more. That must mean that the rest of you are already maxing out with TIA. Remember, you can re-purpose any TIA material for your customers!
The Senate and White House reached agreement on a business support bill last night. We’ll have the details in the afternoon edition.
A former employee of Grizella, who has her Certified Transportation Broker (CTB) designation and is now part of the hospitality industry, announced several hotels open for truckers.
- Clarion Williston – $89.00 / Night + Tax
- El Rancho Williston – $89.00 / Night + Tax
- Minot Microtel Inn & Suites by Wyndham – $49.00 / Night + Tax
- Sleep Inn & Suites Minot – $79.00 / Night + Tax
Amenities Available for Truckers:
- Conveniently Located Close to Truck Stops
- 2-for-1 Drinks at Hotels with Bar & Grills
- A Drink Waiting for Them Upon Arrival
- Curbside Take-Out
- Newly Updated Rooms
- Complimentary Breakfast
- Fitness Room
- 24 Hr. Front Desk Assistance
As India begins to shut down its almost 1.5 billion people, enjoy Tommy Dorsey’s “Song of India.”
Chris Burroughs | Vice President of Government Affairs
MARCH 25, 2020 – ALEXANDRIA, VIRGINIA – The press is awash in stories of different industry segments stepping up to the plate in support of one another during the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) crisis. The media is highlighting the work of several professions, including doctors and nurses and their amazing work; volunteers throughout the country who are contributing a myriad of services within their communities; and truck drivers for keeping freight moving on our highways. These folks are doing amazing work during this tumultuous time. To this end, I want to highlight a group that’s also doing amazing work during this crisis and that’s you – America’s 3PLs.
Thank you for the incredible work you are doing to continue moving freight during this period of extreme disruption and uncertainty. While the reality is that with most freight, it’s the truck driver who physically hauls and delivers freight to its destination; but without YOU, that freight would still be sitting at distribution centers across the country. YOU are among the unsung heroes of the COVID-19 crisis who – without missing a beat – are keeping America moving.
My colleagues and I have spoken with several TIA Members over the last week and have heard some truly amazing and inspirational stories of community leadership and humanitarian efforts.
Bob Biesterfeld, President & CEO of C. H. Robinson, reported that in addition to contributions they made to Give2Asia during the initial COVID-19 outbreak in Wuhan Province, they are donating an additional $250,000 to support those impacted by COVID-19. Specifically, they have donated to St. Christopher’s Truckers Relief Fund to provide financial assistance to truck drivers during these increased times of need; the World Food Programme, Feeding America and Second Harvest Heartland to support hunger relief efforts; and a number of local nonprofits.
I also spoke with John Miller, Owner of Plains Dedicated, LLC, who stated, “at Plains Dedicated, we are working tirelessly to ensure that our customer’s products are being delivered to our country’s grocery stores. We have seen this across the 3PL industry, with all logistics companies stepping up in support of the increasing demands. Our industry works with the medium to smaller truck lines that don’t typically work directly with shippers; and with 90% of carriers being less than ten trucks, our industry is essential to ensuring that food, medical supplies, and emergency products are getting in the hands of the people that need them. If the product is on the shelves in the store, a logistics company made sure it made it there.”
Omar Singh, President & CEO of Surge Transportation, works with a large Fortune 500 household food shipper who is inundated with calls from motor carriers and cannot handle the volume due to the tedious onboarding process and EDI integration. This food shipper is funneling these calls to Surge Transportation to manage their transportation needs.
“3PLs are more essential – now more than ever – as our shipper customers continue to lean even more on us to be their transportation management resource,” said Singh. “At Surge, we are handling more volumes for our customers, we have hired additional employees to handle the increased capacity, and we are working around-the-clock to make sure that products are being delivered to their end destination – as quickly and safely as possible. We are also launching our new dynamic pricing tool, which will allow us to quote a lane within seconds. I am proud of the response our industry and my peers have made throughout the supply-chain in this time of need.”
We don’t know how long this crisis is going to last, but one thing is for sure: TIA Members and 3PLs throughout the country will continue to be a leader on moving freight, ensuring shelves are stocked, hospitals are receiving the supplies that they need, and Americans are getting what they need in a timely fashion.
On behalf of the TIA Staff, I want to extend a sincere thank you to our members who are our heroes throughout the year for the hard work for, and dedication to, this great nation.
As a reminder, you can visit TIA’s COVID-19 Response Center for the latest information, resources, guidance, and news on the crisis.
As TIA continues to monitor the situation surrounding COVID-19 and it’s impact on the 3PL and transportation industries, here is your Afternoon Update for March 24. As a reminder, you can find all the latest information, resources, guidance, and news from TIA’s COVID-19 Response Center.
ESSENTIAL BUSINESS FORM LETTER:
TIA has prepared a form letter for our members to utilize when their shipper and motor carrier customers ask questions about logistics companies being deemed “essential” businesses.
This is obviously a very fluid situation with the landscaping changing rapidly, and we want to make sure you have the necessary guidance and information you need to continue your business.
FMCSA GRANTS CDL/CLP WAIVER:
FMCSA has granted a waiver to CDL and CLP holders who have experienced issues with obtaining access to DMV offices and to medical examiners, many of whom are refusing to take appointments for DOT physicals due to contamination concerns. The waiver extends the date of expiration – until June 30 – of applicable CDLs, CLPs, and non-CDL licenses of commercial drivers, as well as medical certificates that would otherwise expire between March 1 and June 30. Please let us know if you have any questions.
ROLE OF 3PLS IN FOOD & GROCERY MANAGEMENT:
Text Kathy Fulton, Executive Director of the American Logistics Aid Network, is doing an outstanding job – as always – helping the allied industry serve through a crisis. She needed information for a presentation and Evan Armstrong, President of Armstrong & Associates, was able to provide assistance.
We thought you would be interested in the information as well. Kathy wanted to know the amount of food and groceries managed by 3PLs. Evan reported that last year, gross 3PL revenue from food and related groceries was 10.8% of the total Domestic Transportation Management 3PL Segment for all truckload modes. This includes gross revenues from customers in the following industry subsegments: beverages, food consumer products, food production, food services, and wholesale food and groceries.
Thanks, Evan! Keep going Kathy!
GLOBAL IMPACT OF COVID-19:
Ever the data scientist, TIA’s Economist Noel Perry has put together the following charts on the spread of COVID. For your convenience, I have summarized the latest COVID-19 stats in two tables. I’ll send out the data and a quick summary daily.
The first gives country breakdown and status for the major countries hit so far in Asia, Europe, North America. The stats suggest the following: it takes two to four weeks to get from the beginning of significant numbers of new cases to the inflection point where the numbers turn down. Italy, which has apparently finally reached that point has been the longest with South Korea the shortest.
There are five countries in Western Europe whose latest numbers are, down, indicating inflection. We will know with more confidence about that in a few days. Using that data, one would expect the U.S. to reach inflection within the next ten days. That means more days of rising numbers and worry for us. The numbers tentatively suggest that the highly infectious periods last from 25 days (South Korea) to 50 days (Italy). For the U.S., that would mean stability and the relaxation of economic constraints in three to four weeks. For safety, think May 1.
One good note. So far, the U.S. has low fatality rates. Perhaps the worst is to come, but we are off to a promising start. Same for Germany and the UK. It is important to note that record-keeping for this crisis is rudimentary at best. The death numbers are probably the most reliable. However, the case numbers are speculative at best. They are probably much higher.
That said, this is the data we have. I trust it more than the ‘model’ projections used by some commentators. Some of those projections showcase and death estimates orders of magnitude higher than these numbers. For that to be true, either we are missing most of the cases or we are in for multiple waves of infection. In that regard, China and South Korea, the earliest examples, have had no second wave after a month of stability.
The regional numbers crudely summarized here show that geography matters. I have not included the many other countries that gave made little news so far. They total another third of cases. There is something about Western Europe that has made it most vulnerable. One wonders what will happen if the virus attacks large, less-developed populations in Asia and Africa. This data, however, represents much of the developed world and its dominant share of economic activity.
One good statistic, at least so far: even in Western Europe (the worst-hit region), only 1-in-2,300 people have gotten sick and 1-in-38,000 has died. In Italy, the numbers are 1-in-1,000 and 1-in-10,000 (respectively). This is nowhere near the terrifying black-death type pandemic that some people fear.
Although this bug spreads far more quickly and easily compared to more common flus, we think it will almost certainly kill fewer people in the developed world than a normal annual flue cycle. In 2018, for instance, a bad flu season killed 80,000 in the U.S. We currently sit at less than one percent of that sad number.
With employees working from home for the foreseeable future, turn that time that they used to spend around the water cooler taking a TIA distance learning course…
We’ll be back tomorrow with the Morning Edition, featuring COVID-19 updates and information that came in overnight.
Until then, enjoy Benny Goodman and “Sing, Sing, Sing.”
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA) and the Owner-Operator Independent Driver Association (OOIDA) sent a letter to the Commercial Vehicle Saftey Alliance (CVSA) asking them to postpone the International Road check scheduled for May 5-7, 2020. We continue to update the interactive Freight Disruptions Map with several states that have issued a shelter-in-place order, and the map is turning red pretty quickly. We also developed a sample letter that is available for use with your motor carrier or shipper customers if questions arise about being classified as “essential.”
FMCSA has granted a waiver to CDL and CLP holders who have experienced issues with obtaining access to DMV offices and to medical examiners, many of whom are refusing to take appointments for DOT physicals due to contamination concerns. The waiver extends the date of expiration – until June 30 – of applicable CDLs, CLPs, and non-CDL licenses of commercial drivers, as well as medical certificates that would otherwise expire between March 1 and June 30.
As TIA continues to monitor the situation surrounding COVID-19 and it’s impact on the 3PL and transportation industries, here is your Morning Update for March 24. As a reminder, you can find all the latest information, resources, guidance, and news from TIA’s COVID-19 Response Center.
CVSA ROAD CHECK UPDATE
TIA has written FMCSA to postpone the annual CVSA Road Check. What we don’t need right now is anything else impeding the flow of needed goods to market.
We are hearing from members that, while the rest areas are open, the states are using port-a-johns rather than opening and keeping restrooms clean. We are working with the allied trucking industry to correct this travesty.
If we are asking truckers to keep us fed and in toilet paper, the least we can do is provide them with clean, safe bathrooms. Maybe the politicians should stop jumping in front of microphones and grab a mop.
We continue to pound the Senate to act and act now to help American businesses. The Wall Street Journal this morning took our “leaders” to task:
• The Pelosi-Schumer Coronavirus Contagion
• Workers of the World Need Employers
American business can lead us out of this mess, but only if Congress steps in immediately to help businesses maintain payroll and pay their rent. This is not the time for political gamesmanship or for pushing political agendas.
OPERATIONAL NEEDS SURVEY
We sent a survey out to you last night, looking for insights into your operational needs during COVID-19. It will take just 30-seconds to complete and we’ll get the results back to you tonight.
Depending on developments throughout the day, we’ll be back with an Afternoon Edition with additional COVID-19 updates and information. Otherwise, we’ll back tomorrow morning.
Until then, enjoy Count Bassie’s “You Can Count on Me.”
As TIA continues to monitor the situation surrounding COVID-19 and it’s impact on the 3PL and transportation industries, here is your morning update for March 23:
MARCH ECONOMIC FORECAST:
Noël Perry is TIA’s Chief Economist, providing exclusive in-depth analysis to TIA members, with an emphasis on truckload, rail, intermodal, and domestic water markets. Download a copy of Perry’s March 2020 Forecast now and position your company to survive the current state of the industry.
FREE COVID-19 WEBINAR FOR TIA MEMBERS:
TIA is a member of the Small Business Legislative Council (SBLC), who are experts in the human resources and tax arenas. As part of our membership with SBLC, there are several free webinars for our members throughout the year on a variety of topics.
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the changes to the Family Medical Leave Act and federal Sick Leave policies, SBLC will be holding a free webinar tomorrow to update small businesses on these pending changes.
Specifically, this webinar will address the difficult issues that small businesses are facing in light of the COVID-19 threat, particularly when it comes to managing employees and business closures. This will include providing an overview of the new and existing laws that businesses will need to navigate during this unprecedented time. We will also leave ample time for Q&A.
The webinar will be presented by the SBLC’s Strategic Policy Director, Jessica Summers, Esq., who is also a Principal in the Employment Law Group at the Law Firm of Paley Rothman in Bethesda, MD.
The webinar will be held on March 24, 2020, at 12:30 PM EDT. When asked which association you are attending on behalf of, please indicate Transportation Intermediaries Association (TIA) in order to view the webinar for free.
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar. If you have any questions, please contact email@example.com.
On Tuesday, Treasury Secretary Mnuchin announced that the IRS and the Treasury would defer federal income tax payments up to $1 million for individuals and other unincorporated entities and up to $10 million for corporations from April 15 until July 15. It has now been confirmed that filings and payments can both be filed by the new July 15 date.
We’ll be back this afternoon around 4:00 PM ET with the latest COVID-19 updates and information.
Here’s Artie Shaw’s Traffic Jam to Kickstart Week #2 of Social Distancing.
We understand that Pennsylvania has re-opened the turnpike rest areas. This is American business leading the way through this crisis!
As reported earlier today, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) defined 3PLs as an essential business service.
U.S. Customs stated on a call yesterday that all U.S. ports of entry, including the northern and southern borders, are open for cargo and running on pre-crisis hours. U.S. Customs and Border Protection is trying to limit border crossings for non-essential reasons, but Customs told their officers to be liberal in their interpretation. Customs gave the example of Canadians with U.S. mailboxes should be able to enter the U.S. to get their mail.
In order to keep the 3PL industry considered essential as tighter restrictions are promulgated out. We have begun a grassroots campaign for Members of TIA to write their Members of Congress about the importance of the 3PL industry during this tumultuous time. Take action now!
The Metals Service Center Institute is urging other National Association of Manufacturing members to contact the White House and Congress to be deemed essential businesses. As many of these companies are your customers, you may want to support their effort. Here is a copy of their letter.
On Tuesday, Treasury Secretary Mnuchin announced that the IRS and the Treasury would defer federal income tax payments up to $1 million for individuals and other unincorporated entities and up to $10 million for corporations from April 15 until July 15. Treasury is urging states to follow their lead. While the time for payments has been extended by 90-days, tax returns must be timely filed by midnight on April 15.
Not all the news during the COVID-19 crisis is bad. We heard from Kristy Knichel, President & CEO of Knichel Logistics, that since they’ve gone fully remote, the company is now providing employees with a $20/day stipend to buy their coffee or lunch from local small businesses.
Bob Biesterfeld, President & CEO of C. H. Robinson, reported that in addition to gifts they made to Give2Asia during the initial outbreak in Wuhan Province, they are contributing $250,000 to support those impacted by COVID-19.
Specifically, C.H. Robinson has donated to St. Christopher’s Truckers Relief Fund to provide financial assistance to truck drivers during these increased times of need; the World Food Programme, Feeding America, and Second Harvest Heartland to support hunger relief efforts; and they are supporting local non-profits.
TIA encourages all members to share with us the ways you and your business are positively impacting local communities as America’s Entrepreneurs lead us out of this crisis. Please send your stories, testimonials, or efforts to firstname.lastname@example.org, and we’ll be sure to share them!
Here’s Benny Goodman’s Let’s Dance to Start Our First Official Weekend of Social Distancing.