ATA pleased with Congress' appropriations bill
The bill included language the ATA has long supported, including a contentious provision allowing twin 33-foot trailers to be hauled across the nation’s highway system.
Also included in the bill was a call for a new hours-of-service restart restrictions study, which many in the trucking industry think would provide a better basis for new laws.
ATA President and CEO Bill Graves lauded the new bill.
"By including language requiring a more robust study of the hours-of-service restart restrictions originally imposed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration in July 2013, and a modest increase in the length of some truck combinations, the House has taken an important step in improving the safety of our highways, first and foremost, but also the efficiency of our highway system and the industry," Graves said.
Graves brushed aside critics who say the new provisions for longer twin trailers and hours-of-service restrictions will lead to more dangerous conditions on America’s roadways.
“Despite the ongoing misinformation campaign by critics of businesses in general and trucking in particular, these two provisions will make our highways safer and ensure our country's economy is served by an efficient supply chain," Graves said.
The appropriations bill set aside more than $40 billion to go toward repair and renovation of roads and bridges, along with funding for various aviation, rail and maritime projects.