Environmental Concerns Arise Over Transportation Funding Deal
A small provision in a piece of transportation-funding legislation has drawn concerns from environmental advocates. The point of interest was tucked in a deal reached by California governor Jerry Brown and Democratic legislative leaders.
The move delays the implementation if stricter environmental regulations which would impose further controls in commercial trucks. The focus of the regulation deals with air quality and emission rates. The move to delay these regulations was made to win the favor of the trucking industry, as they would face the burden of handling two diesel tax increases for the legislation.
The Coalition for Clean Air voiced their opposition to the move, calling it a last-minute dirty deal. Environmentalists who pushed for the deal maintained that current provisions make it hard to handle the air-pollution challenges facing California.
After the late change to the deal, the state is unable to require drivers to retire, replace, or retrofit their vehicles until the vehicles are 18 years old or have passed 800,000 miles.
The deal’s other noteworthy provision requires the sale of non-compliant commercial vehicles to be blocked by the DMV. Currently around 200,000 trucks fall into this category, as the fail to meet clean-air regulations.
A comment from The California Trucking Association is expected once the finalized bill is released.