Bipartisan legislation was again introduced to repeal the truck excise tax

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Trucking news and briefs for Thursday, June 16, 2022:

Congress takes on federal truck excise tax

For the second time in the past 12 months, Congress has introduced legislation that would repeal the 12% Federal Excise Tax (FET) on heavy trucks.

On Thursday, Representatives Doug LaMalfa (R-California) and Chris Pappas (D-New Hampshire) introduced the Modern, Clean and Safe Truck Act of 2022. A similar bill in the Senate was introduced last year by the senses. Todd Young (R-Indiana) and Ben Cardin (D-Maryland), but he never made it past the finance committee.

The heavy truck excise tax, which was first enacted in 1917 to help pay for World War I, is the highest excise tax collected by the federal government and could add more than $30,000 $ to the cost of new heavy-duty trucks, trailers, semi-trailer chassis and on-road tractors, according to a press release from the bill’s sponsor LaMalfa. Off-road equipment such as agricultural, earthmoving, forestry and mining machinery is exempt from the tax. This tax is paid at the time of sale and is not levied on used truck sales, thereby encouraging the purchase of used vehicles.

It was last increased in 1982 to twelve percent, and although it was due to expire in 1987, it was extended in 1987, 1991, 1998, 2005, 2012 and 2015.

“The federal excise tax has exceeded its original target by more than a century,” LaMalfa said. “Between Sacramento and Washington, truckers must meet dozens of emissions and safety regulations. However, at the same time, our tax code discourages them from buying the newer trucks, with the federal excise tax adding up to $30,000 alone.

American Truck Dealers (ATD) applauded the bill’s introduction.

“We need new, more environmentally friendly trucks deployed on our roads,” said Scott McCandless, President of ATD and President of McCandless Truck Center. “Half of the Class 8 trucks on the road are over 10 years old and lack the cleaner technologies and fuel efficiency gains of today’s newer trucks. The FET is an obstacle to our national goal of putting more cleaner emission trucks into service. For electric trucks, FET is a counterproductive deadweight.

[Related: Nearly 80,000 active trucks could be barred from operating in California by year-end]

CVSA Calls on FMCSA to Require Hemp Carriers to Carry Uniform Documentation

The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance is calling on the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to require interstate carriers transporting hemp to carry the recommended shipping documents included in the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Final Rule on Hemp Production.

The Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, commonly referred to as the Farm Bill of 2018, prohibited states from stopping interstate transportation of hemp produced under an approved production plan. Then, in 2019, the USDA released a final rule officially legalizing the interstate transportation of hemp.

[Related: USDA officially legalizes interstate transportation of hemp]

CVSA said in their letter that due to differences in state laws, enforcement policies, and different legal classifications of hemp, there are inconsistencies in how hemp transportation is enforced at the state level. State. “As states work to implement the changes necessary to enable interstate transportation of hemp produced under the outlined plan, additional details are needed for law enforcement to interact with hemp during its transportation in order to ensure the validity and safety of a load,” the group said.

In the USDA’s final rule, it recommended a set of shipping documents that carriers should have on hand when transporting hemp, but the agency noted that it did not add those recommendations as that requirements “because it does not have jurisdiction over common carriers or other types of carriers”. .”

As the FMCSA is the federal agency with this jurisdiction, CVSA directs the agency to include the recommended standard shipping documents for hemp carriers in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSR).

Specifically, CVSA requires carriers to have copies of the lab analysis report(s), hemp grower license, invoice/bill of lading, and buyer and seller contact information that accompanies the hemp. during its transportation.

“Clear and enforceable regulations are the cornerstone of an effective commercial vehicle safety enforcement program,” CVSA added. According to the alliance, adding the requirements would “ensure law enforcement has the information necessary to verify the validity and safety of a hemp shipment during a roadside inspection.”

CVSA added that such a requirement would also benefit carriers, as it would “reduce the amount of time a driver is detained to verify the safety and validity of their cargo, thereby improving efficiency.”

[Related: Owner-ops say no to time/distance limits on ‘personal conveyance’ in hours regs]

Used truck sales fell in May, with average price, age and miles virtually unchanged from April

According to the latest preliminary version of the State of the Industry: US Class 3-8 Used Trucks published by ACT Research.

Other data released in ACT’s preliminary report included month-over-month comparisons for May 2022, which showed the average retail price and average age were virtually unchanged, at -1%+ 1%, respectively, while average mileage was 2% lower. month after month. Compared to May 2021, the average retail price was 66% higher, with average kilometers and age 4% and 7% higher, respectively.

“Unfortunately, the long-awaited stock release reports come at exactly the wrong time in the cycle,” said Steve Tam, vice president of ACT Research. “At the same time, it is part of the phenomenon that defines an inflection point in the cycle. Freight growth is slowing and will soon begin to decline.

Tam added that because profitability tends to lag the used truck sales cycle, truck owners continue to invest in equipment, “which ends up overcapacitating the market. As a direct result, the industry is already seeing significant downward pressure on freight rates, which will lead to lower truck demand and ultimately lower truck prices.

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