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large financial resources.
Some companies, with big bankrolls,
which were given nationwide authority by the Commission, decided
to buy their way into the new markets with rate discounts ranging
further on this vital issue because I know the carrier witnesses
intend to do so.
The Commission has refused to enforce the obligation of
a carrier to provide service to all shippers covered by its
In fact, the Commission has insisted on
granting carriers authority which applicants did not ask for and
which they do not have the ability or intention to serve.
you want service
particularly competitive service
shippers and communities in your District, you had better tell
the ICC to enforce the common carrier obligation. Otherwise, the
carriers will provide only that service that is the most profitable
In passing the 1980 Act, you did not change the fitness test.
did not change the common carrier obligation.
But the ICC,
nevertheless has ignored both.
It has not been making and doesn't
intend to make carriers provide service to all who reasonably
Our Union is convinced that the ten actions set forth below
are required to comply with the letter and the spirit of the Motor
Carrier Act of 1980.
The first eight points are to be taken by
the Commission; the ninth must be taken by the Secretary of
Transportation; and the tenth by Congress.
1. Before issuing a certificate authorizing motor carrier
service, the Commission should be certain that the applicant is
physically and financially able to provide service coextensive with the certificate of authority and has not violated the Commission's rules or DOT's safety and insurance regulations. The Commission should also require evidence that the proposed
service will serve a useful public service responsive to a public
demand or need.
In all of its actions, the Commission should
comply with the National Transportation Policy (Section 10101),
including its requirements to encourage fair wages and working
conditions; to enable carriers to earn adequate profits, attract
capital and maintain fair wages and working conditions.
The Commission should adopt a policy that carriers shall
be required to provide service on demand, coextensive with their certificate. As a corollary, the Commission should not issue a certificate to a carrier which exceeds the scope of that applied
for or which exceeds the applicant's ability to serve within
90 days after issuance of the certificate.
The Commission should commence and continue to monitor
the operations of carriers to make certain they are fulfilling
their common carrier obligation and are providing service to small
shippers and small communities in their service area. proceedings are needed as sanctions.
4. The Commission should adopt a policy statement requiring that rates published by carriers (a) must be at or above fully
distributed costs; and (b) shall not discriminate against any shipper within the scope of the carriers' certificate by affording
shippers in one area lower rates than those available to shippers
in another area.
Every decision of the Commission implementing the Motor
Carrier Act of 1980 explicitly shall consider and comply with
the admonition in Section 3 (a) that the Act is to be implemented
with the least amount of disruption to the transportation system.
The Commission should promptly ascertain and maintain on
a current basis the total costs of owner-operators whose se: vices
are used by regulated carriers in providing service to shippers.
These costs are required by Section 10701 to be included by the
Commission in determining adequate revenue levels and by the
of Agriculture publishes such costs on a monthly basis for
owner-operators engaged in hauling agricultural commodities.
The Commission should implement Section 10527 by requiring
written contracts for the movement of exempt commodities.
Commission has declined to require such contracts even though it
has recognized in its fuel reimbursement program that owneroperators "are in a weak financial position and lack the bargaining
power to improve this position."
It was congressional recognition
of owner-operators' "weak bargaining position" that led to the
The ICC and the Supreme Court held for more than 20 years
that single source leasing of an owner-operator and his equipment
constituted for-hire transportation requiring ICC authorization.
By a policy statement in February of this year, the Commission
overturned these decisions, stating that single source leasing
is now private carriage.
It assigned the Motor Carrier Act of 1980
as the reason for this radical departure from historic practice,
despite the fact that the 1980 Act did not change the definition
of private and for-hire carriage.
The Act thus provides no
authority for single source leasing.
The Commission action
transforming for-hire carriage to private carriage is contrary
to the Congressional Findings (Section 3(a) of the 1980 Act),
which direct the ICC not to exceed the power vested in it by the
Interstate Commerce Act and to implement the Act with the least
amount of disruption to the industry.
At a minimum, consistent
with its findings regarding the lack of bargaining power of owner-operators, the Commission should have required that single
source leasing contracts should be in writing so that shippers'
ability to exploit the "weak financial position" of owner-operators
would be thereby reduced.
The Secretary of Transportation should increase the amount
of insurance required for any vehicle to $750,000 and coordinate
with the ICC to see that there is strict compliance with this
reguirement prior to the issuance of a certificate or permit.
Department of Agriculture reported recently that owner-operators
are driving on an average between 15 and 16 hours per day.
Secretary is thus not adequately enforcing his regulation limiting
10 hours without rest.
Excessive driving hours and
accompanying fatigue are recognized as a primary cause of highway
Adequate insurance coverage and effective enforcement
of existing safety regulations, including checking of logs which
drivers must maintain, are minimum protections the Secretary can
afford the driving public.
The Teamsters Union requested inclusion in the 1980 Act
of an employee protection program.
The program was rejected with
the assurance that the Act would be so implemented that no dis
location of employees would result.
The Chairman of the House
Committee pointed out that oversight hearings are required each
"If there is a lot of trouble, this Subcommittee
will respond as it has in the past."
Our studies show that
approximately 28 percent of our members engaged in general freight
In the light of these layoffs, the Congress should
are on layoff.
accord displaced employees income protection and priority re
With me here today are Local Union and regional representatives
and our Economist, Norman Weintraub, who will address areas of
specific concern to the Union.
All of us will be pleased to
respond to any questions from the Subcommittee.