Mix-up confuses trucking activists

| Monday, June 20, 2005

Sen. Christopher “Kit” Bond (R-MO) has a major say in what provisions get into the final version of the Highway Bill – the version that gets sent to the president to be signed into law. As a member of the Conference Committee and the chairman of the Senate’s Surface Transportation subcommittee, he’s a man with clout.

So, it was quite a disappointment for truckers who have been phoning Bond’s Missouri office for weeks, asking for his support on mandatory fuel surcharge legislation, only to be told by staffers that he had “nothing to do with it.”

Many callers were told Bond is not even on the Conference Committee.

On Thursday, June 16, the senator’s Press Secretary Shana Stribling confirmed that Bond is indeed on the Conference Committee and that there must have been miscommunication. She apologized for the mix up.

Bond has, in the past, actually been a supporter of mandatory fuel surcharge legislation.

The Conference Committee includes more than 50 members from the House and Senate. They represent not only their home-state constituents, but also the entire nation while serving on the Conference Committee, so truckers should not hesitate to call any of them, even if they are from a different state.

Members of the Conference Committee are developing a compromise version of the Highway Bill based on the versions that were approved by the House and Senate. The current extension of the highway funding legislation runs out at the end of this month.

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