OOIDA board member to testify on cross-border trucking


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A U.S. Senate subcommittee is sure to get an earful Thursday, March 8, about the problems the country will face if the Mexican truck pilot program is allowed to proceed.

The pilot program was announced Feb. 22.

No sooner than the announcement hit the newswire, snaked down K Street and telegraphed around Capitol Hill, U.S. Sen. Patty Murray, D-WA, chair of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, said she would convene a hearing on Thursday.

Murray said her intent is to investigate whether the Bush administration has fulfilled both “the spirit and the letter of the law.” If there is a hole in the plan, Murray should recognize it. As chairman of the Senate subcommittee, she has a long history with cross-border trucking issues, up close and personal.

When the Bush administration first proposed opening the border to long-haul Mexican trucks, the Republican House voted to prohibit cross-border trucking outright due to inadequate safety standards. When the Bush administration threatened to veto that prohibition in the summer of 2001, Murray authored a bipartisan compromise requiring dozens of new safety requirements to ensure that cross-border trucking would not pose a risk to the American public.

The language, written by Murray and Sen. Richard Shelby, R-AL, for the 2002 transportation appropriations bill, was essentially the “to-do list” that has provided sensible guidance for the U.S. DOT.

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