As the trucking industry continues to move the North American economy and all goods related to COVID-19 response and protection, the industry is once again looking to governments to work collaboratively in support of the industry as jurisdictions develop plans to open government offices and restart vehicle registration requirements.
During the early days the COVID-19 pandemic, provincial and state governments responded favourably to industry requests to coordinate and deal with expired vehicle registrations and licence plates fairly for carriers and owner-operators.
Now that permit and licensing operations look to resume, a coalition consisting of the Canadian Trucking Alliance, the Owner Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA), the Private Motor Truck Council of Canada and the Women’s Trucking Federation of Canada wrote IRP Inc., and asked all jurisdictions consider the following:
- The introduction of a realistic timeline to clear up the backlog of expired registrations and pending renewals;
- Allowing trucking companies the option to make interest free, quarterly payments for vehicle registrations;
- Allow repayments of expired plates to be spread over a 24 to 36-month period for registration extensions impacted by COVID-19 disruptions.
“The trucking industry, like all sectors of the economy, is suffering with significant revenue declines and cash flow constraints since the onset of COVID-19, as freight volumes have diminished significantly,” said CTA president Stephen Laskowski. “The group is asking governments to work with the industry to develop policies for the renewal of vehicle registrations that recognizes the significant financial issues facing the trucking sector.”
In a subsequent letter to the Council of Ministers Responsible for Transportation and Highway Safety in Canada, the group also asked provincial and territorial governments to approach the vehicle registration renewals similarly, and where applicable, to remove interest rates that may be applied to quarterly payment options. In addition, the letter asked provinces and territories to adopt a reasonable policy for renewing the backlog of expired driver’s licenses and medicals and the host of other driver, vehicle and carrier credentialing.
“Throughout the pandemic, governments and the trucking industry have worked collaboratively to ensure the North American supply chain continues to function. We need to maintain this same spirit when it comes to developing payment and renewal polices for commercial vehicle registrations as well as the gamut of other driver and vehicle credentialing items coming back online,” added Laskowski.