For years, many individual truckers and small trucking companies have found themselves in opposition with the ATA’s regulatory pushes, which often serve the interests of the largest trucking companies in the industry.
The ATA’s recent fight, however, is receiving support from large and small truckers alike, as the organization pushes back on newly elected Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont’s promise for truck-only tolls.
On November 6, Connecticut voters elected Democratic Governor Ned Lamont. One of Lamont’s major campaign promises was generate revenue for infrastructure fixes and railroad expansion by tolling trucks only. During Lamont’s acceptance speech on November 7, he told his supporters that “I’m going to do everything I can to put electronic tolls just on tractor trailer trucks, nothing else, going forward.”
Lamont believes he can raise anywhere from $100 million to $250 million per year by tolling trucks.
— NBC Connecticut (@NBCConnecticut) September 25, 2018
Lamont’s truck-only toll proposal has both local and national trucking groups up in arms over the cost — and the constitutionality — of the plan.
The Motor Transport Association of Connecticut (MTAC), which represents 1400 trucking companies, says that they plan to fight Lamont if he goes through with his campaign promises. Joe Sculley, President of the MTAC, told the CT Post that “Truck tolls are discriminatory” and says that truckers would take legal action to fight the tolls.
The ATA says says they’re prepared to strongly back state groups like MTAC in their fight against truck-only tolls.
ATA President Chris Spears said truck-only tolls are “flawed and potentially contagious policies that could eventually have national implications.”
“It’s ATA’s intention to ramp up its litigation center and leverage our full ability to influence outcomes,” he added.
A similar truck-only toll is now in place in the neighboring state of Rhode Island. The ATA has sued Rhode Island over the tolls, arguing that they are discriminatory and unconstitutional because they “impede the flow of interstate commerce.” That lawsuit against Rhode Island is currently pending.