FMCSA refuses to hold off on cross-border program

By Jami Jones, senior editor | Wednesday, July 20, 2011

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has flat out refused to hold off on the cross-border trucking program with Mexico pending resolution of a petition for review filed by the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association with the court.

On July 6, OOIDA filed a petition for review with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. The Association is asking the court to review the program and to “enjoin, set aside, suspend (in whole or in part), or determine the validity of the implementation of this program.”

OOIDA’s legal counsel, Paul Cullen Sr. with The Cullen Law Firm, then sent a letter to FMCSA on July 8 asking the agency to consent to stay the program pending resolution of the petition for review.

FMCSA’s counsel denied the request on July 13.

“FMCSA’a denial of OOIDA’s request for a stay pending appeal was expected,” Cullen said. “We were required to ask FMCSA for the stay because a party to such an appeal cannot ask the court for a stay unless it first asks the agency and is turned down.”

OOIDA’s petition for review, pending before the U.S. Court of Appeals, challenges that “implementation of the pilot program is arbitrary, capricious and abuse of discretion and otherwise not in accordance with law.”

The Association opposes opening the border because Mexico still has not implemented or conducted enforcement programs similar to those in the United States and because there would be no relevant corresponding reciprocity for U.S. truckers.

A hearing on the petition for review has not been scheduled by the court.

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