South Dakota bill to ease overweight penalties nixed

By Keith Goble, Land Line state legislative editor | 1/25/2002

The South Dakota Senate Transportation Committee has rejected a bill that would have given truckdrivers more leeway with overweight fines. The bill would have eased penalties on truckers by subtracting a scale's margin of error from the total weight when a truck was heavier than the legal limit.

Sen. John Koskan (R-Wood) told Land Line he offered the bill (SB70) because truckers must often pay a larger penalty due to the margin of error. He told the committee of a personal instance when the difference between a state scale and a commercial scale was about 800 pounds.

"It's a very common complaint, a very legitimate complaint," said Koskan. "Every trucker has experiences like this. I'm not asking for higher limits. I'm asking for fairness."

Koskan said he plans to reintroduce the bill later this session after altering some of its language or he might attach it to another bill. To contact Sen. Koskan, call (605) 773-3821.