House to vote on bill limiting cross-border program

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A bill designed to shine a bright light on the impending cross-border program is set for a vote in the U.S. House of Representatives Tuesday.

The “Safe American Roads Act of 2007,” originally introduced by Rep. Nancy Boyda, D-KS, seeks to implement several “sensible steps” to rein in the U.S. Department of Transportation.

“If the DOT pilot program proceeds as planned, drivers in Kansas and across the United States will soon share their roads with unsafe Mexican trucks,” Boyda said in a prepared statement at a press conference she held Monday in Topeka, KS.

“The flood of foreign traffic will inevitably result in collisions, injuries and even fatalities.”

Boyda said she introduced the bill to implement “several sensible steps to rein in the Department of Transportation.”

For example, the bill – HR 1773 – calls for an independent review panel to oversee the program. If at any time during the program the panel determined the program was having an adverse effect on motor carrier safety, the panel could recommend modifications or termination of the program. The DOT would have only five days to take action on the recommendations or end the program.

There would also be a limit on how many trucks will be allowed in from Mexico if HR1773 passes. The cross-border program would still be open to 100 Mexican motor carriers. Those motor carriers just wouldn’t be able to operate more than 1,000 trucks in the U.S.

The bill also looks to take the guesswork out of whether the Department of Transportation has complied with all of Section 350 of the 2002 transportation appropriations legislation.
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