“Dear Mr. President,
Millions of hard working American truckers, farmers and small businesses need you to take immediate and decisive action to protect them from a massive new regulation that is scheduled to go into effect just 39 days from today. I am writing on their behalf with a plan to help you do just that.”
So opens a letter from Rep. Brian Babin to President Trump that he shared on his Facebook page. This is the latest and perhaps last-ditch attempt from the Congressman to try and delay the compliance date of the controversial Electronic Logging Device (ELD) mandate.
In the letter, Rep. Babin asks President Trump to issue an Executive Order which would “provide an immediate waiver for all trucking sectors and operations subject to this mandate, until such time as it can be certified that implementation will not cause economic or other harm to the millions who are subject to it.”
Cost is indeed the main point that Babin brings up, emphasizing that the federal government expects ELD compliance to cost $2 billion a year with a “disproportionate impact on small business.”
Babin also brings up two other main points: Safety and cybersecurity.
Regarding safety, Babin writes that claims about the safety benefits of ELDs are “dubious at best.” He even emphasizes and underlines that “some of the large trucking companies with the worst safety records on the road have already been fully utilizing ELD’s in their fleet for years.”
On Rep. Babin’s third point, he writes that “there is simply no assurance at this time that these ELD’s, which are being manufactured with components from around the world and sold by numerous companies across America, are safe from a cyberattack that could cause these trucks, many of which carry hazardous materials, to inflict terror on Americans.”
Babin is seeking at least a three-month delay until April 1st, but also states that the delay should remain in effect “for as long as it takes.” Delaying until April 1st would prevent the inevitable confusion and delays from hitting during the peak of the holiday season, and would also put the compliance date in line with when the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA) has said that it will start fully enforcing the mandate.
Babin closes the letter by warning President Trump about corporate interests who want the ELD regulation to go through as planned.
“A few powerful interests will tell you that this mandate is good for trucking, and our country, but millions of hardworking people across our country who came together exactly one year ago to elect you president profoundly disagree. I ask that you listen to those millions of voices, and give everyone at least another three months to get this right.”
You can read the letter in its entirety here.