West Virginia passes coal-truck bill at last second

| 3/17/2003

As the West Virginia Legislature worked toward a midnight deadline March 8, the House of Delegates approved a bill increasing coal truck weights to 120,000 pounds.

The Senate passed the measure on the Legislature’s final day after the House gave the go-ahead March 7.

SB583 establishes “coal resource transportation roads” with weight limits up to 120,000 pounds in 15 southern counties. Special permits would be needed for weights over 80,000 pounds. The permits would cost $100 to $500.

The bill now goes to Gov. Bob Wise for his signature. Wise told The Dominion Post March 6 he would likely sign off on the measure as long as it retained strict standards for enforcing the higher limits.

The governor was critical of the industry-backed bill when it was first introduced in the Senate, saying the 19-page proposal skimped on details for enforcing higher weight limits. Several amendments totaling 40 pages were later added to the bill.