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September 6, 2017 11:00 AM, EDT

Proposal to Delay ELD Mandate Advances to House Floor

Update, Sept. 7, 12:30 a.m. EDT: The Babin amendment to delay the ELD mandate failed 173-246. Watch TTNews.com for updates on Sept. 7.

A closely watched provision that would halt the December mandate on electronic logging devices for trucks will reach the floor of the House as early as Sept. 6.

Lawmakers are scheduled to consider the fate of a proposal led by Texas Republican Rep. Brian Babin that would essentially deny funding for the ELD rule.

Babin

His proposal is among more than 100 amendments up for consideration during what is expected to be a busy day for Republican floor managers. Ten minutes of debate have been granted for the amendments and the chamber has scheduled votes at noon and at 10 p.m. EDT.

Colleagues who are supporting Babin’s amendment include Republican Reps. Lloyd Smucker of Pennsylvania, Doug LaMalfa of California, Paul Gosar of Arizona, Jason Smith of Missouri and Democrat Rep. Collin Peterson of Minnesota.

If adopted, the amendment would be included in a fiscal 2018 funding bill that appears unlikely to garner significant floor time in the Senate. Moreover, senators have not endorsed Babin’s proposal.

The amendment’s proponents, such as the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, argue that many truckers would benefit from additional time to comply with the ELD mandate.

The amendment’s opponents, such as the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and American Trucking Associations, argue that the industry has had ample time to prepare for the mandate and the rule would improve hours-of-service compliance.

“The only implicit reason that any driver would be opposed to an ELD is that the driver intends to skirt the hours-of-service rules. The ATA stands vehemently opposed to that,” ATA president and CEO Chris Spear wrote in HuffPost on Sept. 6. “The ELD issue has been debated for nearly a decade.”

The rule requires carriers to equip commercial vehicles with ELDs as of Dec. 18. FMCSA will meet with drivers and executives at the North American Commercial Vehicle Show Sept. 25-28 in Atlanta.