BREAKING NEWS: Babin introduces bill in House to delay ELD mandate

By Jami Jones, Land Line managing editor | 7/18/2017

In light of mounting confusion, complications and questions, Rep. Brian Babin, R-Texas, introduced a bill in the House of Representatives on Tuesday that would delay the electronic logging mandate for two years.

The bill, HR3282, is called the ELD Extension Act of 2017.

“We appreciate Congressman Babin’s leadership on this issue. While we still believe the ELD mandate should be outright repealed, FMCSA simply isn’t ready to implement this rule,” OOIDA Executive Vice President Todd Spencer said. “Congressman Babin’s bill would provide more time for the agency to address a number of significant unresolved concerns identified by stakeholders.”

OOIDA threw its full support behind Babin’s bill. The Association called on its membership to call their members of the House and encourage them to co-sponsor Babin’s legislation.

“OOIDA members have already laid the groundwork for a delay or repeal,” OOIDA Director of Government Affairs Mike Matousek said. “By actively calling and writing their lawmakers on the impending ELD mandate, many members of the House should be versed on the problems that lie ahead for this mandate and hopefully be willing to step in and support a delay.

“Now, we need our members to call and specifically encourage support of Congressman Babin’s bill.”

The first step for the bill following introduction is to be assigned to a committee for consideration. Babin is a member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, which should receive the bill.

The introduction of Babin’s bill follows the first congressional call for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to consider a delay on the logging mandate as well.

Monday evening the House Committee on Appropriations voted on the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Funding bill for fiscal year 2018. The committee held a markup hearing and voted 31-20 to report the bill to the full House for consideration.

The Committee issued a report to accompany the bill, which details the members’ thinking and recommendations to the full House when considering the bill. While report language does not necessarily carry the weight of law, it outlines the “intent of Congress” and directs actions by agencies.

The report accompanying the THUD bill details concerns over the impending logging mandate.

“In light of the heavy burden of this mandate, especially on small carriers, the Committee directs the Department (of Transportation) to analyze whether a full or targeted delay in ELD implementation and enforcement would be appropriate and, if so, what options DOT has within its statutory authority to provide temporary regulatory relief until all ELD implementation challenges can be resolved,” the report states.

To underscore the committee’s concern, it ordered the FMCSA to report back to both the House and Senate committees within 60 days of the passage of the THUD legislation.

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