The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has granted an ELD waiver to farmers and ranchers who haul animals, that would fall under the Electronic Logging Device mandate that went into effect on December 18. The waiver will be valid until March 18, 2018, when it is set to expire.
FMCSA indicated that granting the waiver was a way to allow time to gather public comment and consider the concerns raised by ag and livestock haulers who are affected by the ELD mandate, which requires the purchase, installation, and use of an ELD. Industry groups assert the ELD mandate would push small businesses out of the marketplace and negatively impact the wellbeing of animals being hauled.
There are some in the ag industry who have already received their 90-day ELD waiver, however, there are still many farmers and some law enforcement agencies that are unaware of the existing waiver. Those operating under the waiver are required to carry a copy of the Federal Register Notice with them and must also have a “satisfactory” safety rating from FMCSA, or be unrated.
With the ELD waiver in effect, there is hope from industry groups representing ag and livestock that House appropriations language will be adopted that would allow the rule to be rewritten and to increase the delay for a full year.