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Proposal to delay ELD deadline dies in House

Late-night vote kills amendment to DOT appropriations bill

Posted September 7, 2017

An amendment that would have delayed the electronic logging device (ELD) mandate has failed in the U.S. House of Representatives by a vote of 173 to 246.

The amendment from Rep. Brian Babin (R-TX) was tied to a DOT appropriations bill and would have delayed the ELD implementation deadline from December 18, 2017, until September 30, 2018.

During floor debate late on Wednesday evening, Rep. Babin said the delay would help “alleviate the sticker shock … facing small trucking companies” and give the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) time to determine if more waivers and exemptions might be needed.

Representatives from both sides of the aisle spoke in opposition to the amendment.

“While well-intentioned, this delay would endanger public safety by giving commercial vehicle operators the ability to exceed the federal hours-of-service limits,” said Rep. Rick Crawford (R-AR), who noted that Congress approved the ELD mandate on several occasions.

“It’s too late in the game to be changing this rule,” said Rep. Bruce Westerman (R-AR).

A separate amendment prohibiting the FMCSA from completing its speed-limiter rule was approved. The rule as proposed in September 2016 would require heavy-duty vehicles to be equipped with speed limiting devices.

The DOT appropriations bill still contains an active provision that would delay the ELD deadline for livestock haulers only.

The legislation, known as the “Make America Secure and Prosperous Appropriations Act,” must pass both the House and Senate before it can be signed into law. It would fund the FMCSA and other agencies through September 30, 2018.

This article was written by Daren Hansen of J. J. Keller & Associates, Inc.

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