Huge Insurance Hike on Truckers NOT Expected to be in Senate’s Infrastructure Bill, OOIDA Says
Washington D.C. – The Owner Operator Independent Driver’s Association (OOIDA) remains confident the United States Senate will not include a provision to massively increase the required insurance minimum for motor carriers in its infrastructure spending legislation.
On Wednesday, the Senate advanced a $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill in which the legislative text remains unfinished.
According to Senate.gov, the bill — which was advanced to debate in a vote of 67-32 — includes H.R. 3684 (INVEST in America Act) which passed the House of Representatives earlier this month.
The INVEST in America Act reauthorizes the surface transportation program for the next five years and includes a long list of controversial provisions which will have major impacts on trucking.
Perhaps none more devastating than a provision to increase to the minimum amount of insurance required for commercial motor vehicles (CMV) from $750,000 to $2 million, and an order that directs this amount to be adjusted for inflation by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) every five years.
However, Jay Grimes, Director of Federal Affairs with OOIDA tells Transportation Nation Network (TNN) he does NOT expect the insurance hike provision to ultimately be in the Senate’s bill once the text is completed.
“We do not expect it to include any language regarding insurance minimums,” Grimes stated on Thursday.
Grimes called yesterday’s vote to advance the bill a “rare” situation in which the Senate used the House’s version (H.R. 3684) as a “placeholder” because the legislative text of the Senate’s bill remains unfinished.
Further, Grimes attributed the Senate’s irregular procedural tactic to “the urgency to get an infrastructure package done.”
“Democrats want to get the infrastructure package and the separate budget (reconciliation) bill passed before they head home for the August recess,” he explained.
To Grimes’s point, following Wednesday’s vote to advance the measure, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) again reiterated his intention to both pass the $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill along with a $3.5 trillion reconciliation bill packed with other Democratic spending priorities.
“We are going to get the job done and we are on track,” Mr. Schumer said.
Schumer is targeting passage of both bills by the end of the Senate work period which is Monday, August 9.
Still, we won’t know for sure what is in the Senate’s infrastructure bill until the text is released which is expected to likely happen by this weekend.
TransportationNation.com will continue to track it closely.