Following the unanimous decision by the U.S. Supreme Court that allows more access to the U.S. for Mexican motor carriers, Secretary Norman Y. Mineta stated, "[The] decision by the Supreme Court opens the way for the U.S. Department of Transportation to continue working with Mexican authorities to move forward with long-haul bus and truck operations. We are committed to a comprehensive approach to guarantee that trucks and buses operating within the United States are in compliance with all applicable safety and environmental standards."
The International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT), one of the litigants in a suit to block President Bush's order to remove the moratorium on granting operating authority to Mexican carriers, saw things differently. While Secretary Mineta spoke of the President's commitment to safety, the IBT stated, "By allowing the Bush Administration to move forward with its plan to open the border, this decision represents a setback for all who advocate for safe roads, clean air, and a secure America. Teamster General President James P. Hoffa further stated, "The Administration's ongoing push to open the border not only demonstrates a gross disregard for highway safety and the environment - it belies the President's continued disregard for the health and welfare of Latino families living in the border region."
Writing for the Court in its unanimous decision, Justice Clarence Thomas specifically restated the language of the Motor Carrier Act of 1980, which provides for any carrier who is essentially fit, willing, and able to provide service to be granted operating authority. An application process for Mexican carriers to receive operating authority exists alongside a similar process for U.S. domestic carriers. DOT and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration will be tasked with overseeing the process and ensuring compliance with the rules are they are clarified.
For additional coverage of this subject, see the
July issueof Logistics Today.
Other articles already published: Logistics Today's News & Views June 14, 2004)
Last Mile - Perry's Column (Logistics Today, June, 2004)