Pennsylvania House panel backs bill to ease truck driver apportioned registrations

October 5, 2021

Keith Goble

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One bill moving through the Pennsylvania House is touted to benefit truck drivers and the state transportation department.

The House Transportation Committee voted unanimously on Monday, Oct. 4, to advance a bill to require the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation to stagger the expiration dates of commercial vehicles apportioned registrations.

Pennsylvania regulations now mandate every apportioned vehicle registration to expire annually on May 31.

Rep. David Zimmerman, R-Lancaster, says the single expiration date has historically caused an annual backlog at the agency.

He adds that the problem with the single expiration date has been worsened because of the pandemic.

“COVID-19 has only aggravated the annual backlog, as PennDOT has not resumed their apportioned registration renewal event, which was typically held annually at the Farm Show Complex,” Zimmerman said in a memo to House lawmakers.

He added that there is no need for PennDOT to require every apportioned registration to expire at the same time.

The bill, HB1871, would provide at least four renewal periods each year. The department would be authorized to pro-rate registration as the new expiration dates are created.

“This legislation will not only create a more efficient process for the trucking industry, but for PennDOT as well since the department would no longer be burdened and overloaded with processing apportioned registration applications at the same time each year.”

HB1871 awaits further consideration in the House.

OOIDA supports the bill

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association says the proposed change would be good for truck drivers responsible for purchasing and renewing their own plates.

The Association estimates there are about 3,000 to 4,000 OOIDA members affected who reside in the state.

Mike Matousek, OOIDA director of state legislative affairs, said the current system that expires all apportioned registrations at the same time is “chaotic at best and creates an unnecessary backlog.”

“The proposed system (via HB1871) would stagger the expiration of apportioned registrations, thus making things easier for both industry and government,” Matousek wrote in a letter of support to state representatives. LL

More Land Line coverage of news from Pennsylvania.

 

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Keith Goble has been covering trucking-related laws since 2000. His daily web reports, radio news and “OOIDA’s State Watch” in Land Line Magazine are the industry’s premier sources for information regarding state legislative affairs.