WASHINGTON, D.C. –By putting his signature on a piece of paper, US president Barack Obama has hit the restart button on two controversial hours of service issues.
Yesterday, Obama signed the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act, 2015, putting into law the omnibus bill that was approved by both the US Senate and the House of Representatives. As reported earlier, contained in that bill are revisions to two key hours of service rules. Starting immediately upon the signing, drivers will no longer have to include two overnight periods of 1-5 a.m. during their 34-hour reset. They will also no longer be limited to one reset period per week.
Technically, there is still one more formal step to accomplish before all the legal requirements are fulfilled for the Appropriations Act to officially become a matter of law, and that is to have a public notice published, but that is in the works according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), which gave the following statement to Truck News:
“With the President signing the 2015 budget bill into law, the provision which suspends enforcement of the restart restrictions in the Hours of Service rule becomes effective. FMCSA is preparing a Federal Register Notice, that will also be posted on our website, to advise the public that it is suspending enforcement of the restart restrictions as required by law. We are also working to ensure that the 12,000 state and federal motor carrier enforcement personnel are prepared to revert back to the previous restart.”