OOIDA calls USMCA passage a ‘victory for American truckers’

January 16, 2020

Tyson Fisher

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The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association is applauding the passage of legislation that will eventually replace the North American Free Trade Agreement.

On Thursday, Jan. 16, the Senate passed the USMCA Implementation Act, HR 5430, with an 89-10 vote. The bill was passed by the House on Dec. 19. Now that both chambers have approved of the bill, it will go to President Donald Trump’s desk to be signed into law.

“Senate passage of USMCA is a long-awaited victory for American truckers, who were hung out to dry under NAFTA,” OOIDA President Todd Spencer said. “Clearly we’re eager to see this new agreement enacted by all parties involved because the cross-border trucking provision will finally limit unfair competition from Mexico-based motor carriers – many of which do not follow the same rigorous safety, environmental, and labor standards as our members.  We applaud the Senate for passing this agreement and getting the overall effort one step closer to the finish line.”

Once President Trump signs the bill, USMCA will be two-thirds the way completely finished. The trade agreement requires all three countries to ratify legislation within their respective governments. Mexico has already ratified the agreement. Canada’s House of Commons is expected to vote on USMCA when it resumes in the last week of January.

After all three countries ratify the trade agreement, more procedural actions need to be taken before it goes into effect. USMCA is expected to go into full force sometime this year.

The final text approved by Congress includes several provisions directly related to the trucking industry.

A representative of a U.S. long-haul trucking services industry, the U.S. Trade Representative, a congressional committee or the president can request an investigation. The investigation will determine whether Mexican carrier is causing material harm to a United States long-haul trucking services industry.

Mexican carriers that have already been granted cross-border authority or have applied for authority are not off the hook. According to USMCA section 327, the U.S. Department of Transportation will compile a survey of those carriers to ensure compliance of the Border Commercial Zones.

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association welcomed the passage of USMCA.

“Senate passage of USMCA is a long-awaited victory for American truckers, who were hung out to dry under NAFTA,” OOIDA President Todd Spencer said. “Clearly we’re eager to see this new agreement enacted by all parties involved because the cross-border trucking provision will finally limit unfair competition from Mexico-based motor carriers – many of which do not follow the same rigorous safety, environmental, and labor standards as our members.  We applaud the Senate for passing this agreement and getting the overall effort one step closer to the finish line.”

OOIDA had a hand in shaping the bill. During negotiations, the Association has worked with the United States Trade Representative and members of Congress to update NAFTA’s trucking-related provisions “that continue to harm American small-business motor carriers and jeopardize highway safety,” OOIDA stated in a news release.

Tyson Fisher

Tyson Fisher joined Land Line Magazine in March 2014. An award-winning journalist and tireless researcher, his news reports, features and blogs bring depth to our editorial content, backed with solid detail. Tyson is a lifelong Kansas Citian.