UCRA enforcement postponed

The fees for 2016 payable by interstate motor carriers and other entities under the Unified Carrier Registration Agreement (UCRA) were due by the end of calendar 2015, and enforcement was due to begin, at least in many states, at the first of this year. The UCR program, however, does not require those paying the fees to display any credential in or on motor vehicles; enforcement depends largely on the electronic records of carriers’ payments shown in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s SAFER system.

SAFER, however, has recently had problems receiving state updates saying which carriers have paid UCR fees, so state enforcement personnel at roadside may find no record of payment for a carrier that has actually complied with its obligations. Some carriers have received tickets for operating without having paid their UCR fees when in fact they have.

Earlier this week, the UCRA Board recommended to the states they postpone UCR enforcement until February 1, 2016, to allow time for FMCSA to resolve its system problems, and the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance has also requested its member states’ enforcement agencies to do likewise. We assume most or all states will honor these requests.

(By Bob Pitcher, State Laws Newsletter)