Virginia lawmakers support multiple truck issues

By Keith Goble, Land Line state legislative editor | 2/27/2012

Trucking issues on the move at the Virginia statehouse cover IFTA, truck weights, and military truckers.

On its way to the governor is a bill that would put the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles in charge of the state’s involvement with the International Fuel Tax Agreement program.

In return, truck drivers would be responsible for applying to the department for IFTA licenses and identification.

DMV personnel would be authorized to handle truck size and weight compliance at permanent weigh stations, as well as issue citations for IFTA violations.

The agency would also be responsible for working with State Police and local law enforcement to make sure truck rules are dealt with uniformly throughout the state.

The House and Senate versions – HB353 and SB343, respectively – made it through both chambers of the statehouse without a vote in opposition.

House lawmakers voted unanimously on Monday, Feb. 27, to advance a separate bill that addresses sand, gravel, and crushed stone hauls. SB335 would extend the temporary increased weight limit for such loads in coal counties to January 2013.

The current expiration date is July 1, 2012. The date has been updated for the past seven years.

The Senate must sign off on changes to the bill before it can advance to the governor’s desk. As introduced, the bill would have extended the expiration date to summer 2013.

Two more bills have received clearance to move to the governor’s desk. The Senate voted unanimously on Monday to advance a bill that addresses truck weights. House lawmakers already approved the bill – HB806.

The bill would establish cost-based fees determined by the amount that a vehicle is overweight for single- and multi-trip permits. Multi-trip permits could be transferred to another vehicle twice over the course of one year. Each transfer would cost $10.

The annual fee for overweight permits would be set at $130.

Fees collected would be used for road and bridge maintenance.

Also headed to the governor is authorization for a program dubbed “Troops to Trucks.”

Intended to ease the transition from military duty to driving truck stateside, HB194 would require the DMV to consider applicants’ military training and experience in reviewing their eligibility to receive a Virginia CDL.

The first-of-its-kind rule would allow service personnel returning from duty to exchange their military CDL for a state-issued CDL without the need for a written or a skills test.

To view other legislative activities of interest for Virginia, click here.

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