In order to insert trucking issues forcefully within the Surface Transportation Reauthorization process, the Agriculture and Forestry Transportation Reform Coalition (AgHaul) and the Coalition for Transportation Productivity (CTP) are working with the American Trucking Associations and other trucking interest groups to stage a massive “Stand Up For Trucking” event this coming January 31-February 1 in Washington, DC. The central activity will be a full-day of scheduled legislative contacts on Capitol Hill, all day on Wednesday, February 1. FRA urges all of its members with an interest in forest products trucking, and who have a story to tell, to participate in this two-day event. The legislative contact agenda will cover several issues—such as Hours Of Service rules—but a key issue is simply “Trucking Productivity,” which is where AgHaul’s and CTP’s advocacy of the Safe and Efficient Transportation Act (HR 763 / S 747) comes in.
Since House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee Chairman John Mica (R-Florida) has postponed Committee markup of the Surface Transportation Reauthorization bill until next year—quite possibly concurrently with this Fly-In—forceful constituent contacts will be timely, to impress Committee members with the importance of truck weight reform and to build strong support throughout Congress. (AgHaul and CTP cancelled our planned December 6-7 Fly-In, once Chairman Mica announced the postponement of T&I Committee mark-up.)
AgHaul and CTP members can register to participate in the Fly-In at this link. Registration is free. The event starts with a Reception and overall issue briefing at 6:30 PM, January 31, at a Capitol Hill location. At 8:00 AM the next morning, February 1, AgHaul and CTP will provide our members with a special orientation on SETA, to help our team members deliver their messages forcefully. Appointments with congressional offices will run from 9:00 AM through 4:00 PM that day, and we will hold a debriefing session as meetings conclude, beginning at 3:00 PM. There is no headquarters hotel, but “Stand Up For Trucking” organizers will be able to provide leads for lodging convenient to Capitol Hill.
Registration on our module is easy, and free of charge, but it does ask for names of relevant House members, to whom you can speak with a constituent interest. Please provide the name of the House member in the district where you are registered to vote in the appropriate space, as well as the names of House members in districts where you have business interests—which generally means at mill locations. Please give some thought to what members you can have influence with before you register. To allow our schedulers most flexibility, please register by Tuesday, January 10, if possible.
FRA, AgHaul, and CTP would like to thank the National Shippers Strategic Transportation Council and the American Trucking Associations for taking the initiative in organizing “Stand Up For Trucking” on such a timely basis and for welcoming our participation.