Third parties would be allowed to give skills tests required
for truckers to obtain commercial driver’s licenses under legislation approved
by an Arkansas House panel Jan. 20. The bill now heads to the full House for
Rep. Phillip Jackson, R-Berryville, told members of the
House Public Transportation Committee that his bill would allow the Arkansas
State Police to designate certain smaller trucking firms, driver training
schools and technical schools to administer driving skills tests for truckers
in the state. Companies that have more than 50 licensed commercial drivers
already can administer the test, he said.
The legislation is intended to take some of the burden off
the State Police, who have a backlog of drivers seeking to get their CDLs, the Arkansas
News Bureau reported.
Under the bill – HB1077 – the State Police would continue to
oversee and certify the testing process, but they could designate qualified
third parties to administer the skills test for commercial licenses.
Third-party administrators, who would be required to pay a
fee to be in the program, would only be eligible to direct the skills test, not
the written portion of the driver’s license exam.