Judge sets Sept. 8 deadline for port ‘clean truck’ injunction

By Charlie Morasch, Land Line staff writer | 8/13/2008

A federal judge will hear arguments for and against stopping “Clean Truck” programs at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach just three weeks before the ports are scheduled to begin implementing the program.

In July, the American Trucking Association filed a civil lawsuit to stop both ports from implementing their own versions of “Clean Truck” programs.

On Aug. 7, Federal Judge Christina Snyder set a hearing for Sept. 8 in which the ATA will state its case and the city of Los Angeles and other defendants will argue their opposition.

The ATA claims that portions of the clean truck programs are attempts to regulate trucks, which are protected by federal law.

The clean truck programs were approved with the goal of lowering truck emissions from the estimated 16,000 trucks that visit the ports daily, many of which are much older than long-haul trucks in use throughout the country.

Each port will ban trucks that don’t meet 1989 model year engine emission standards by Oct. 1, and will phase in further requirements to eventually bring all trucks to 2007 level emissions compliance by December 2012.

Both ports also will require all trucks entering the port to be licensed concessionaires. Los Angeles will require all truck drivers entering the port to be company employees.

The ports have combined efforts for a $2.2 billion truck replacement program that’s funded partially by container fees and also by California state funds from Proposition 1B. This year’s allocation of Proposition 1B funds will total $98 million.

– By Charlie Morasch, staff writer

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