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ATD’s Legislative Fly-in Update

Published June 15, 2022

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2021 ATD Vice Chair Scott McCandless

Scott McCandless

ATD Chairman
McCandless Truck Center
16704 E. 32nd Avenue
Aurora, CO 80011
(office)

ATD will soon welcome truck dealers back to Washington, D.C. as the 2022 ATD Legislative Fly-In commences on Capitol Hill June 21-22. Dealers, state association executives (ATAEs), and industry advocates from around the country will converge to tackle the commercial truck industry’s most critical issues.

This is the time for our elected officials to hear from us so they can make informed decisions about policies impacting our customers, employees, and industry. ATD’s number one priority is the repeal of the federal excise tax (FET) on heavy-duty trucks. We’ve said this time and time again: The 12% FET is outdated and needs to be eliminated once and for all!

The American Truck Dealers (ATD) has always sought to promote the deployment of cleaner and greener commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) on our nation’s roadways. With more than half of the Class 8 CMVs on the road today over 10 years old, replacing them with new CMVs will greatly reduce criteria air pollutants and reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Today’s advanced engines and clean fuels combine to reduce CMV criteria pollutant emissions by over 95% compared to 1998. In fact, it would take 60 of today’s new CMVs to generate the same emissions as just one CMV manufactured in 1988.

The clean air and fuel savings benefits of new regulatory mandates recently proposed by EPA on CMVs can only be realized if the vehicle is sold. ATD is working on a new “Clean Trucks Plan” which aims to accelerate fleet turnover by 1) repealing the 12% federal excise tax (FET) on heavy-duty CMVs; and 2) avoiding excessively stringent new regulatory mandates. If new CMVs aren’t affordable, they will not be purchased and won’t replace older, less efficient vehicles. To promote affordability, Congress should repeal the FET on CMVs, while agencies such as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) must avoid imposing cost prohibitive new regulatory mandates.

After years of our hard work, many members of Congress now agree that the FET is obsolete, we must educate Congress on how our new ATD Clean Trucks Plan reflects the reality of today’s marketplace.  We also must work to generate support for the “Modern, Clean, and Safe Trucks Act of 2021” (S. 2435), a bipartisan bill to repeal the FET. A bipartisan companion bill will be introduced in the House this week.

In addition to FET repeal, during the fly-in attendees will also work to urge members of Congress to cosponsor H.R. 6394, the catalytic converter anti-theft legislation which ATD supports, and oppose the “REPAIR Act,” H.R. 6570—a so called ‘right to repair’ bill, which is very problematic.

I’m pleased to announce our congressional and regulatory guest speakers for June 22. Congressman Jim Baird (R-IN) will begin the ATD briefings and is expected to focus on his catalytic converter anti-theft legislation. Congressman Chris Pappas (D-NH) will follow and share his perspective on FET repeal and efforts to advance clean trucks. Finally, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has mandated cleaner trucks for the future, and its March proposal will further reduce nitrogen oxide (NOx) tailpipe emissions from medium- and heavy-duty trucks. Sarah Dunham, EPA’s Director of the Office of Transportation and Air Quality, will join the morning briefing and discuss the proposed NOx rule and other emissions issues pertinent to dealers.

I thank all attendees in advance for taking the time to come together on behalf of all truck dealers as we navigate the political and regulatory landscape ahead. Next week will be a busy and productive week for our truck dealers as we advocate for the industry’s most important issues. I look forward to facing these battles together!