The trucking and rail industries have teamed up to press the incoming Trump administration to limit the ability of transportation regulators to write new rules, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal.
Group leaders are looking to reverse Obama administration safety initiatives and slow the process for enacting new regulations. The effort is part of a push lobbyists are making in preparation for the “prospect of business-friendly policy changes with Donald Trump in the White House and Republicans in control of both chambers of Congress.”
The Obama administration, through agencies that oversee trucks, railroads and highways, has written a series of freight and passenger transport rules in the past eight years that safety advocates say reduce traffic and rail accidents. Opponents, including truck freight and rail companies, say the rules’ benefits are unproven, and they have added heavy costs at a time when tepid freight volumes have squeezed corporate profits.
Transportation companies want the Transportation Department to rethink rules that include work limits for truck drivers, safety-equipment requirements for trains and other regulations. And the rail and truck groups want to go farther by setting particular steps transportation agencies must go through as they write rules and operating guidelines.
“We want to see industry included in developing regulations,” Chris Spear, chief executive of the American Trucking Associations, said in an interview. “We’d hope to see a lot more collaboration than we’ve seen in the past few years.”
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