Cross Border Trucking Lawsuit on Fast Track
On July 8, 2012 a lawsuit was filed by the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association seeking to put an end to the cross-border trucking program. This lawsuit seeks to protect truck driving jobs on all levels, and the trucking industry is watching it with great interest. Initially denied, the case has been placed on a fast track to be heard by an appellate court.
The first motion that was brought in this case was an injunction that the OOIDA sought requesting that the program be stopped immediately. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit denied the motion but also put the case on an expedited schedule. It was determined by the courts that, while they were not willing to grant the injunction, it is also in the best interest of the trucking companies and the American citizens to swiftly move this case through the courts.
Spokesman Jim Johnston, President of the OOIDA, stated that they were disappointed that the injunction was not granted. However, they are also pleased that an expedited hearing schedule has been set and the trucking industry is hopeful that a quick resolution can be reached.
Another group is also challenging this same practice. The Teamsters and Public Citizen have also filed a challenge which is expected to be heard in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit. At this time the two lawsuits are not being combined.
It is expected that a limited number of carriers would apply. Under the Bush program there were 100 vehicles actively enrolled. Current estimates are that only 29 carriers would be involved under the Obama program. However, it is the belief of the Unions and the Trucking companies alike that the only acceptable number of trucks operating across the American-Mexican border would be zero.
The program is designed to reduce tariffs that have been levied against the United States by Mexico. However, the general consensus in the industry is that the cost of the tariffs can not be allowed to outweigh the loss of American jobs that we might be facing if this program is allowed to survive.
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