Nebraska Senator Deb Fischer said legislation she recently introduced would provide flexibility in hauling livestock and perishable commodities. Andrew Walmsley, American Farm Bureau Federation Congressional Relations Director, recently said the HAULS Act would extend hours of service exemptions in agriculture to year-round. He added the legislation would provide three things to modernize trucking regulations and make a benefit for the safety and efficiency of hauling ag products.

Walmsley says the changes include removing seasonality restrictions.

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“Most states have gotten rid of seasonality of planting and harvest seasons. When you are moving livestock, that’s a year-round enterprise. And so its Congress recognizing the growing season is really year-round for a lot of ag commodities. The second piece would provide a 150 air mile exemption on the destination of hauls. And then finally, the legislation would update the definition of an ag commodity.”

Walmsley added the legislation promotes safety for drivers and animals.

“One of the unique situations that we find ourselves in agriculture is that we are sometimes dealing with live animals or perishable commodities. The animal piece is really key in where we need to make sure that we are using common sense and have the needed flexibilities to ensure safety. That’s what the HAULS Act looks to do, is to make sure that perishable commodities like livestock can get to their destination safely, that driver can get to their destination safely, and then that driver rests.”

Walmsley pointed out that the Farm Bureau and a host of other ag groups support Fischer’s legislation. Click Here to read the HAULS Act in its entirety.

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