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Trucking-Related Legislation -- 2003

2003 Legislation - Summary

pic of Oregon State Capitol

This Web page contains information about 16 bills passed by the 2003 Oregon Legislature that were of particular interest to trucking companies doing business in Oregon. Of course, many more motor carrier-related bills were introduced, considered during the Session, and failed to advance. Summaries of several such bills are included at the bottom of this page.

Read a three-page summary of the major legislation passed. This is an excerpt from the August 2003 Motor Carrier News.

For each Session, the ODOT Motor Carrier Transportation Division maintains a Web page like this tracking key trucking-related legislation -- 2012201120102009, 2008, 2007, and 2005.

For more information and extensive access to Bills and Laws, visit the Oregon Legislature Web Site.

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HB2041 - Truck Taxes & Fees


House Bill 2041 - Raise Truck Taxes and Fees

Amend ORS 803.420 to increase Oregon truck registration fees by 53 percent. The annual fee for registering an 80,000 pound truck, for example, would go from $320 to $490. Add a provision to ORS Chapter 826 to allow an Oregon company that operates in other states and Canadian provinces under the International Registration Plan  to pay the Oregon portion of registration fees on a quarterly basis if their total Oregon apportioned fees exceed $1,000 per year. There would be a $4 administrative processing fee for the quarterly payment plan.

Amend ORS 825.476 to increase Oregon weight-mile taxes by 9.9 percent. The per mile fee for an 80,000 pound truck, for example, would go from 11.97 cents to 13.16 cents. Amend ORS 825.480 to increase the substitute tax, commonly called flat fees, that certain carriers can pay in lieu of weight-mile taxes. Flat fees would increase 10 percent so that log haulers would pay $6.10 per 100 pounds of declared combined weight (up from $5.55), sand and gravel haulers would pay $6.05 per 100 pounds (up from $5.55), wood chip haulers would pay $24.62 per 100 pounds (up from $22.40), and for-hire farm carriers in trucks with a combined weight less than 46,000 pounds would pay $5.00 per 100 pounds (up from $4.55).

Amend ORS 818.225 to increase road use assessment fees from five and two-tenths cents to five and seven-tenths cents per equivalent single-axle load mile traveled. (These fees apply to trucks operating under single-trip, nondivisible load permits at gross weights above 98,000 lbs. "Equivalent single-axle load" means the relationship between actual or requested weight and an 18,000 pound single-axle load.)

Amend ORS 825.450 to increase the fee for an Oregon Weight Receipt and Tax Identifier credential from $5 to $8.

The bill also increases many DMV fees, including Commercial Driver License fees and car registration and titling fees.

Over the next ten years, the revenue from increased taxes and fees would cover the cost of $2.5 billion in Highway User Tax Bonds. Two-thirds of the bond proceeds would be used to replace and repair bridges ($1.3 billion on state highways and $300 million on county and city highways).

The bill also includes a provision allowing an Oregon company up to $80,000 per year in Oregon income tax credits for companies that buy low-emissions diesel engines during calendar years 2004 through 2007. The credit applies to trucks with a combined weight over 26,000 pounds with diesel engines purchased in Oregon (model years 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, and 2007) and certified by the Environmental Protection Agency to emit 2.5 grams or less nitrogen oxides per brake horsepower-hour. For tax years beginning on or after January 1, 2005, the following credits would be available to Oregon individuals or corporations: $925 per engine for 1-10 trucks, $705 per engine for 11-50 trucks, $525 per engine for 51-100 trucks, and $400 per engine for more than 100 trucks.

As originally introduced, the bill proposed increasing car registration fees to $20 per year.
As a revenue-raising measure, this bill requires approval by a three-fifths majority of the House and Senate.

Read testimony delivered May 28 before House Transportation and Revenue Committees, and June 25 before Senate Transportation and Economic Development and Revenue Committees .

Visit the Oregon Legislature Search page for Bill History information, including access to all various copies of the bill as it advanced in the 2003 Session.

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HB2176 - Emergency Vehicles


House Bill 2176 - Keep Safe Distance From Emergency Vehicles

Create a new law in the Oregon Vehicle Code making it a Class B traffic violation to fail to maintain a safe distance from an emergency vehicle or ambulance that is stopped and displaying warning lights. On a highway with two or more lanes in a single direction, a car or truck would commit the offense if it fails to move to the lane not adjacent to that of the emergency vehicle or ambulance, or fails to reduce speed if it´s unsafe to change lanes. On a two-directional, two-lane highway, a car or truck would commit the offense if it fails to reduce speed.

Visit the Oregon Legislature Search page for Bill History information, including access to all various copies of the bill as it advanced in the 2003 Session.

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HB2217 - Safety Regulations


House Bill 2217 - Change Safety Regulation Exemptions

Repeal ORS 825.017(13), a statute that exempts vehicles used to carry U.S. mail over "rural or star route" by local mail "Highway Contract Route" operators. This was meant to exempt motor carriers engaged in the delivery of Oregon mail from point to point within the state, but there is no longer any mail deliverer that needs this intrastate exemption. Because of the way mail is commingled today, its delivery is almost always considered interstate commerce.

Repeal ORS 825.017(20), a statute that exempts from motor carrier safety regulation any single vehicle or vehicle combination that weighs 12,000 lbs. or less and is used in private carriage of passengers. These relatively lightweight buses and vans currently fall under a federal exemption from safety regulation. Vehicles that weigh 12,000 lbs. or less would only be capable of carrying 15 or fewer passengers and the federal exemption applies to vehicles with that limited carrying capacity.

Amend ORS 825.017 to remove the exemption for vehicles owned or operated by a person prior to the time the vehicle is placed in commercial operation (17), the exemption for persons transporting a commercial fishing boat when the combined weight of the vehicle, trailer, and boat is 15,000 lbs. or less (22), and the exemption for vehicles used for purposes of forest protection and fire suppression (23). References to these operations would be placed in a separate statute that stipulates they are subject to motor carrier safety regulation, which would then apply when operating either interstate or intrastate. Also, remove the reference to a vehicle used in a limousine service operation that "Is driven by a licensed chauffeur" (ORS 825.017(21)(a)) since Oregon no longer issues a chauffeur´s license.

Amend ORS 825.024 to stipulate that farm vehicles are subject to motor carrier safety regulation when operating in interstate commerce or when the combined weight is more than 80,000 pounds. The statute currently implies that the vehicles are exempt, but state statute cannot exempt them from federal regulation when operating interstate.

Amend ORS 811.215(1), a statute that exempts privately owned commercial vehicles from seat belt requirements in ORS 811.210, to clarify that commercial vehicle drivers are not exempt when operating in interstate commerce. The exemption does not apply to motor carriers operating in interstate commerce.

Amend ORS 811.465(6), a statute related to exemptions from special rail crossing procedures for high-risk vehicles, to add to the list of vehicles that are not exempt from special procedures at crossings with crossing gates. The list of vehicles currently includes only school buses or school activity vehicles required to stop at crossings with crossing gates under ORS 811.460. The list would be expanded to include tank vehicles, whether loaded or empty, used to transport hazardous materials, vehicles transporting any hazardous material requiring the vehicle be placarded, and high-risk vehicles described in ORS 811.460 that are not otherwise described in the subsection, when operating in interstate commerce.

This bill includes an emergency provision so that it would take effect immediately upon passage.

At a May 14 hearing, the House Transportation Committee amended the bill to direct the ODOT Motor Carrier Transportation Division to continue to produce an annual performance-based Commercial Vehicle Safety Plan and track safety-related performance measurements. At a June 19 hearing, the Senate Revenue Committee amended the bill to require Oregon´s trained and certified inspectors to follow provisions of the Safety Plan.

Read testimony delivered March 31 and April 4 before House Transportation Committee, and June 19 before Senate Revenue Committee.

Visit the Oregon Legislature Search page for Bill History information, including access to all various copies of the bill as it advanced in the 2003 Session.

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HB2661 - Speed Laws


House Bill 2661 - Cleanup Speed Laws, Study Speed Increase

As amended by the Senate Transportation and Economic Development Committee on May 20, the bill clarifies the authority to establish designated speeds for certain highways, removes references to federal maximum speed limit, and consolidates speed limit laws. The bill removes laws treating urban and rural areas differently, specifically the requirement that interstate speed limits be reduced to 55 mph in the urban areas of Portland, Salem, Eugene, and Medford. The bill retains the speed limit designation for special areas, such as school zones and alleys, and makes other housekeeping-like changes in statutes. This cleanup of speed laws is from Senate Bill 183 as originally introduced.

As amended previously by the House Transportation Committee on April 16, the bill gives the Department of Transportation authority to take an abandoned vehicle into custody and remove it from the highway. This is the same authority the State Police has for removing vehicles from the right of way.

The bill was originally written to require that the Oregon Department of Transportation complete a specific highway project near the entrance to Klamath Community College.

Read testimony delivered April 11 before House Transportation Committee, and May 20 before Senate Transportation and Economic Development Committee .

Visit the Oregon Legislature Search page for Bill History information, including access to all various copies of the bill as it advanced in the 2003 Session.

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HB2759 - Maximum Fines


House Bill 2759 - Increase Maximum Fines

Amend ORS 153.018 to increase the maximum fines and base fines for Class A, B, C, and D violations and limit judges´ discretion when considering reductions in fines. The fine for a Class D traffic violation goes from $77 to $94, up 22%. Examples of a Class D violation include exceeding maximum length, height, or width without an over-dimension variance permit. The fine for a Class C traffic violation goes from $109 to $141, up 29%. One of the most common Class C violations is failing to carry or use tire chains when required. (Failing to use chains can be a costly Class A violation if it constitutes substantial risk — now a $493 ticket.) The fine for a Class B traffic violation went from $175 to $237, up 35%. Common Class B violations include driving a commercial vehicle without a CDL or exceeding commercial driver license restrictions. The fine for a Class A traffic violation went from $295 to $421, up 43%. Common Class A violations include vehicle-related violations such as operating with no Oregon Weight Receipt and Tax Identifier, operating with an invalid Oregon certificate or permit, or operating in excess of a declared weight. One common Class A driver-related violation is intentionally falsifying a logbook.

The bill also amends ORS 153.125 to change the way a base fine is calculated, making it 50% of the maximum fine rather than 40%, and it amends ORS 137.290 to increase by $2 the Unitary Assessment that is part of the base fine. The bill also increases circuit and appellate court filing fees 30%, and increases maximum fines for felonies and misdemeanors 25%.

Visit the Oregon Legislature Search page for Bill History information, including access to all various copies of the bill as it advanced in the 2003 Session.

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HB2933 - Accident Reporting


House Bill 2933 - Change Accident Reporting Limits

Amend ORS 811.720 to increase the threshold amount of property damage that requires filing an accident report, currently $1,000, so a report must be filed if the accident involves an injury, fatality, or property damage in excess of $1,500. The driver and owner of a vehicle with more than $1,500 damage must report the accident. If the property damage is to property other than a vehicle involved in the accident, each driver and vehicle owner must report the accident. If a vehicle involved in an accident is damaged to the extent that it must be towed away, each driver involved must report the accident. As originally written, the bill changed the threshold amount of property damage to a minimum of $2,500.

Read testimony delivered April 28 before Senate Transportation and Economic Development Committee .

Visit the Oregon Legislature Search page for Bill History information, including access to all various copies of the bill as it advanced in the 2003 Session.

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HB3001 - Safety Corridor Fines


House Bill 3001 - Double Fines in Safety Corridors

Originally written to extend the sunset date for a 1999 law imposing double fines for certain traffic violations committed in two safety corridors, this bill was amended to make double fines apply to all safety corridors for which Oregon Department of Transportation has posted signs, including Truck Safety Corridors.

Visit the Oregon Legislature Search page for Bill History information, including access to all various copies of the bill as it advanced in the 2003 Session.

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HB5057 - ODOT Fees


House Bill 5057 - Approve Certain ODOT Fees

Approve certain Oregon Department of Transportation fees that were established after July 1, 2001. Oregon law regarding financial administration -- ORS 291.055 -- requires the formal approval of new fees or increased fees that are established after July 1 of any odd-numbered year.

Fees to be ratified in HB5057 include the annual fees for motor carriers participating in the International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA)  program administered by the Motor Carrier Transportation Division. New annual fees for IFTA were established by administrative rulemaking in late-2001 and became effective January 2002. The Motor Carrier Division was authorized to establish new fees by the passage of Senate Bill 740 in the 2001 Legislative Session.

Visit the Oregon Legislature Search page for Bill History information, including access to all various copies of the bill as it advanced in the 2003 Session.

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HB5077 - ODOT Budget


House Bill 5077 - Oregon Department of Transportation Budget


Limits biennial expenditures from fees, moneys, and other revenues, including miscellaneous receipts and federal funds received as reimbursement from the U.S. DOT, as follows: Maintenance and Emergency Relief - $293,419,677;  Preservation - $311,915,678;  Bridge - $226,260,863;  Highway Safety - $46,319,589;  Operations - $34,022,586;  Modernization - $253,712,038;  Utility Permits - $4,472,858;  Special Programs - $164,759,760;  Local Government - $208,789,477;  DMV - $124,340,625;  DMV Debt Service - $66,576;  Motor Carrier - $44,326,184;  Transportation Program Development - $62,409,112;  Public Transit - $22,807,568;  Rail - $62,398,982;  Transportation Safety - $9,798,001;  Oregon Board of Maritime Pilots - $199,385;  Capital Improvement - $2,529,970;  Central Services-$114,014,829.

Limits biennial expenditures from federal funds, excluding federal funds received as reimbursement from the U.S. DOT, as follows: Transportation Development - $181,535;  Motor Carrier Transportation - $6,144,505;  Central Services - $56,051;  Public Transit - $27,047,250;  Rail - $22,862,239;  Transportation Safety - $13,109,049.

Establishes debt service limits for payment of expenses from lottery moneys from the Administrative Services Economic Development Fund to ODOT as follows: Westside Light Rail - $19,928,618;  Short Line Infrastructure Assistance - $673,761;  South Metro Commuter Rail - $43,473;  Industrial Rail Spur Assistance - $500,050.  Appropriates $3,914,616 from the General Fund for the Willamette Valley Train Program.

This bill includes an emergency provision so that it would take effect on July 1, 2003.

Visit the Oregon Legislature Search page for Bill History information, including access to all various copies of the bill as it advanced in the 2003 Session.

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SB181 - Equipment Standards


Senate Bill 181 - Update Vehicle Equipment Standards

Amend ORS 816.350 to prohibit covers on headlights, taillights, brake lights, turn signals, and reflectors. Amend other parts of Chapter 816 to add specifications regarding auxiliary lights, passing lights, brake lights, and fog lights.

This bill also makes a number of housekeeping changes throughout Chapter 815, laws related to vehicle equipment, and Chapter 816, laws related to lights, to modify the role of the Oregon Department of Transportation in establishing and enforcing standards for vehicle equipment. Amendments to the statutes would generally remove references to equipment "approved" by ODOT, referring instead to equipment that complies with standards established or adopted by ODOT. Chapters 815 and 816 would specify that standards adopted by ODOT must be consistent with vehicle standards established under federal regulations or under standards of the Society of Automotive Engineers, the United States of America Standards Institute, or the U.S. Bureau of Standards.

At a February 4 hearing, the Senate Transportation and Economic Development Committee amended the bill to remove a provision for a new law making it a Class B traffic violation to view the display screen of an electronic device when operating a motor vehicle if a person is viewing material that does not aid in the safe operation of the vehicle. This provision is similar to that proposed in Senate Bill 299. At an April 23 hearing, the House Transportation Committee approved further minor amendments.

Read testimony delivered February 4 before Senate Transportation and Economic Development Committee, and April 23 before House Transportation Committee .

Visit the Oregon Legislature Search page for Bill History information, including access to all various copies of the bill as it advanced in the 2003 Session.

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SB187 - Hardship CDLs


Senate Bill 187 - No Hardship or Probationary CDLs

Amend ORS 807.200 to remove provisions for issuing hardship driver permits and probationary driver permits as Class A commercial, Class B commercial, or Class C commercial licenses. Also, amend ORS 807.240 and 807.270 to remove references to issuing a hardship permit and probationary driver permit authorizing a person to drive a commercial vehicle.

Read testimony delivered February 4 before Senate Transportation and Economic Development Committee, and April 21 before House Transportation Committee .

Visit the Oregon Legislature Search page for Bill History information, including access to all various copies of the bill as it advanced in the 2003 Session.

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SB188 - Title Fees


Senate Bill 188 - Change Title Fee Statute

Amend ORS 803.090 to clarify that the $90 vehicle title fee applies to "trailers eligible for permanent registration under ORS 803.415(1) and motor vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating over 26,000 pounds, excluding motor homes." According to the current wording, the $90 title fee applies to "a trailer over 8,000 pounds, a motor vehicle with a gross vehicle weight rating of 26,000 pounds or more or a truck tractor." The bill also makes a few other housekeeping-like changes in wording.

Read testimony delivered February 13 before Senate Transportation and Economic Development Committee, and April 21 before House Transportation Committee .

Visit the Oregon Legislature Search page for Bill History information, including access to all various copies of the bill as it advanced in the 2003 Session.

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SB425 - Test Run Requests


Senate Bill 425 - Allow Test Run Requests

Create a new law in the Oregon Vehicle Code to allow a shipper or motor carrier to request that a road authority, other than a city, authorize unrestricted access by truck tractor and semitrailer combinations, in lengths in excess of that authorized under ORS 818.080, on a specific highway. Within 60 days following receipt of a request, the road authority would grant the request or complete an evaluation to determine whether the highway can safely accommodate the proposed operation. The road authority may conduct a test run of the combination or produce an applicable previous evaluation. The law would outline how a test run and evaluation would be conducted and it authorizes the Oregon Department of Transportation to adopt rules to establish uniform requirements and consistent mitigation strategies that a road authority must apply as conditions for operation of a truck tractor and semitrailer combination under an overlength variance permit. The law would also specify that a road authority may not issue an over-dimension variance permit for the sole purpose of specifying highways on which the vehicle or combination may not travel.

The bill was originally written to amend ORS 810.010 to designate ODOT as the road authority responsible for establishing truck size and weight limits under ORS 810.060, and issuing over-dimension variance permits under ORS 818.200, on county roads outside the boundaries of incorporated cities. The statute currently designates ODOT as the road authority for all state highways, including interstates, and the county governing body as the road authority for all county roads outside the boundaries of an incorporated city.

Read testimony delivered February 27 and March 25 before Senate Transportation and Economic Development Committee .

Visit the Oregon Legislature Search page for Bill History information, including access to all various copies of the bill as it advanced in the 2003 Session.

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SB469 - Plate, Receipt Fee


Senate Bill 469 - Change Plate Fee, Weight Receipt Fee

At an August 19 hearing, this bill´s original provisions were deleted. The new, A-Engrossed version amends ORS 825.454 to change the fee for an identification device from $5 to $8. This would allow the ODOT Motor Carrier Transportation Division to charge $8 for issuing a Weight Receipt and Tax Identifier credential to an Oregon-based motor carrier. As amended, the bill also changes fees in ORS 826.023 so the plate fee goes from $7.50 to $2.50 and includes the cost of a registration card and sticker.

The bill was amended at an August 25 hearing to call for the repeal of a provision in House Bill 2148 that would have transferred revenue from ODOT to cities and counties for highway preservation projects. The amendment included an emergency clause making Senate Bill 469 effective upon passage.

Visit the Oregon Legislature Search page for Bill History information, including access to all various copies of the bill as it advanced in the 2003 Session.

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SB471 - Pack & Load


Senate Bill 471 - Register Pack and Loaders


Create a new law in ORS Chapter 825  requiring persons performing pack and load services, including existing authorized for-hire carriers of household goods who perform the service, to register with the Oregon Department of Transportation, pay an initial fee of $200 and an annual renewal fee not to exceed $100, and file proof of liability and property damage insurance based on minimum insurance limits set by ODOT. Persons failing to comply with the registration requirement would be subject to civil penalties of up to $500 per violation.

Amend ORS 825.180 to create the initial $200 application fee. Create a new law authorizing ODOT to impose an annual fee on each for-hire household goods carrier to defray the cost of regulating pack and loaders. The annual fee may not be less than $100 and may not exceed 0.1% of the carrier´s annual gross operating revenue from moving household goods within Oregon. A for-hire household goods carrier in its first year of operation would pay $100. Carriers failing to pay the annual fee would pay a penalty of 2% of the fee for each month or fraction of a month it´s overdue (penalty in addition to the annual fee).

Amend ORS 825.326 to establish a Consumer Protection Household Moves Account, separate from the General Fund, for the deposit of all fees, penalties, and interest collected by regulation of pack and loaders and enforcement actions against persons transporting household goods without a certificate. ODOT would use the account exclusively for administration and enforcement of the regulation of pack and loaders.

Amend ORS 825.017 to remove the exemption from motor carrier regulation for "a person who provides services relating to the packing or movement of personal property if the person does not directly or indirectly provide a motor vehicle for the movement of the property and if the person does not act as an agent for any person who does provide a motor vehicle for movement of the property."

Amend ORS 825.005 to add a definition of "pack and loader" -- a person that provides services related to the packing or movement of personal property but does not directly or indirectly provide a motor vehicle for the movement of the property or act as an agent for any person who does provide a motor vehicle for the movement of the property. As originally written, the bill added a definition of "pack and load services" -- services relating to the packing or loading of personal property that are performed for compensation and for the purpose of moving the property.

Amend ORS 823.103 to reduce from nine months to three months the time a shipper has to file a claim after delivery of property by a for-hire carrier of household goods.

Visit the Oregon Legislature Search page for Bill History information, including access to all various copies of the bill as it advanced in the 2003 Session.

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SB661 - Amber Warning Lights


Senate Bill 661 - Permit Amber Warning Lights

Amend ORS 816.350 to allow a commercial vehicle to be equipped with commercial vehicle warning lights and amend ORS 811.515 to permit use of the lights (a) to warn operators of other vehicles of the presence of a traffic hazard requiring the exercise of unusual care in approaching, overtaking, or passing the commercial vehicle, and (b) when the commercial vehicle is being used for commercial purposes and the vehicle is stopped, parked, or left standing at a commercial or work site, or in a highway work zone. Also, amend ORS 811.525 to allow use of the warning lights with any other lights during day or night and amend 816.280 to specify that commercial vehicle warning lights shall be amber.

The bill originally required use of the lights to warn other vehicles when they need to be careful approaching, overtaking, or passing the vehicle.

Read testimony delivered March 27 before Senate Transportation and Economic Development Committee, and May 7 before House Transportation Committee .

Visit the Oregon Legislature Search page for Bill History information, including access to all various copies of the bill as it advanced in the 2003 Session.

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Bills that did not advance


House Bill 2039 - Require Intermodal Chassis Inspection
Create a new law in ORS Chapter 777 requiring Ports that load and unload oceangoing vessels to employ trained safety inspectors to check every intermodal chassis, the trailers that carry intermodal freight containers, before they leave a Port. Inspections would check brakes, suspension, tires and wheels, connecting devices, lights, and electrical system. Inspectors would place a green tag on chassis with no defects and a red tag on chassis with defects. Red-tagged chassis could not be released to a driver until repairs were made. Removing or tampering with a tag would be a Class A misdemeanor. If an intermodal chassis defect presents an imminent danger to the public safety or is the result of the owner´s repeated failure to make proper repairs, inspectors must notify the Department of Transportation, which may suspend the owner´s certificate or permit issued under ORS 825.100. The Department may also forward a recommendation to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration for administrative or other action deemed necessary against the owner´s interstate operating authority. A driver may request that a chassis be reinspected if he or she believes it´s unsafe and inspectors would be required to conduct another inspection. Port employees, inspectors, owners, or lessees of intermodal chassis would commit a Class C misdemeanor if they threatened, coerced, or otherwise retaliated against a driver who notified an inspector about the condition of a chassis, or requested reinspection or repair.


House Bill 2040 - Prohibit Slow Port Operations
Create a new law in ORS Chapter 777 prohibiting Ports from making a truck tractor wait longer than 30 minutes before beginning loading or off-loading container cargo at a marine terminal. A Port would commit a Class B violation ($300 fine) if it made a truck wait longer than 30 minutes, and each delayed truck would be a separate violation. Ports attempting to avoid requirements in the law would commit a Class A violation ($600 fine). This would apply to Ports with marine terminals that process 100,000 or more 20-foot equivalent unit containers per year. It would not apply to Ports experiencing unavoidable events beyond their control or Ports that meet certain operational criteria outlined in the law.


House Bill 2218 - Repeal Flat Fees
Repeal ORS 825.480 to remove the provisions that motor carriers hauling certain commodities can pay a substitute tax, in lieu of weight-mile taxes, that are based on a rate per 100 pounds of declared combined weight. This substitute tax, commonly called flat fees, is currently available to carriers transporting logs, poles, peeler cores or piling, carriers transporting sand, gravel, rock, dirt, debris, cinders, asphaltic concrete mix, metallic ores and concentrates or raw nonmetallic products, whether crushed or otherwise, moving from mines, pits or quarries, carriers transporting wood chips, sawdust, barkdust, hog fuel or shavings, and farm vehicles described in ORS 825.024 with a combined weight of less than 46,000 pounds that are being operated under a permit issued under ORS 825.102. Also repeal ORS 825.482 to remove the provision that the Department of Transportation and the Oregon Transportation Commission must review flat fee rates in each even-numbered year and recommend to legislators any appropriate adjustments in rates. This bill also amends various other statutes in order to make housekeeping changes related to the repeal of ORS 825.480 and 825.482.


House Bill 2367 - Raise Car and Truck Taxes
This bill was amended and then incorporated into House Bill 2041 as part of a transportation funding package. As originally introduced, the bill proposed a three-cent increase in gas taxes, an increase in truck road use assessment fees, and an increase in truck weight-mile taxes and flat fees.


House Bill 2464 - Raise Titling Fee
Amend ORS 803.090 to add a $100 fee for issuance of a first Oregon certificate of title to a vehicle registered in the state. Amend ORS Chapter 802 to stipulate that all revenue raised by the additional fee shall be deposited in the State Highway Fund with no reduction for administrative expenses of the Department of Transportation relating to the provision of driver and motor vehicle services.


House Bill 2501 - Study Interstate Speed Limit Increase
Amend ORS 810.180 to authorize the Oregon Department of Transportation to increase the speed limit on interstate highways to a maximum 70 mph for cars and 65 mph for trucks and buses. ODOT could change the speed limit if it determines, after an engineering and traffic investigation, that the maximum speed set under ORS 811.112 is greater or less than is reasonable or safe under the conditions that exist at a particular section of the interstate. At a March 24 work session, the House Transportation Committee amended the bill to limit speed increases for cars. The bill was originally written to authorize increases to 75 mph for cars.


House Bill 2686 - Exempt Fire Apparatus Size/Weight
Amend ORS 818.030, 818.070, and 818.100 to exempt fire apparatus from maximum vehicle size and weight limits. Also, amend ORS 818.050 to specify that posted weight limits do not apply to fire apparatus.


House Bill 2724 - Triple Combination for Personal Use
Amend ORS 818.120 to add a provision that a combination of three vehicles may be operated on a highway without violating the two-vehicle limit in ORS 818.110 if the vehicles are operated solely for personal use.


House Bill 2947 - Limit Engine Idling
Amend ORS Chapter 811 to make idling a diesel engine for more than five minutes a Class C traffic violation. The law would apply to heavy-duty diesel vehicles with a combined weight over 8,500 lbs., but it would not apply if the vehicle has a trailer with a cooling unit used to refrigerate or freeze cargo, auxiliary equipment that requires the engine to idle to provide power to the equipment, or the reason for idling is traffic congestion. It would also not apply to fire trucks, ambulances, or similar emergency vehicles. Amend ORS Chapter 468 to direct the Environmental Quality Commission to establish and implement a heavy-duty diesel vehicle testing program, including enforcement through civil penalties in an amount to be determined in rulemaking. Heavy-duty diesel vehicle would be defined as "a motor vehicle powered by a compression ignition internal combustion engine using petroleum-based diesel fuel and having a gross vehicle weight rating of 8,500 pounds or actual curb weight, as delivered to the ultimate consumer, of more than 8,499 pounds." Amend ORS 815.300 to require that fixed load vehicles and vehicles proportionally registered under ORS 826.009 and 826.011 must be equipped with a certified pollution control system.


House Bill 3072 - Attest to Tax Compliance
Create a new law requiring that any state agency, board, or commission that issues occupational licenses or licenses for the privilege of engaging in an occupation or profession may require the licensee to attest to compliance with personal income tax laws or corporate excise or income tax laws, whichever are applicable. The Department of Revenue could enter into agreements with any state agency, board, or commission to assist in administering the tax compliance requirement. Any state agency, board, or commission that requires tax compliance as a condition of issuance or renewal of a license may suspend, revoke or refuse to issue or renew a license if the licensee has been subject to a 100% penalty with respect to a personal income tax return. The bill originally called for a licensee to demonstrate compliance with personal income tax laws or corporate excise or income tax laws, but the House General Government Committee amended it to require the licensee to just attest to compliance. The Committee also added the provision that a license may be suspended, revoked or not issued or renewed if the licensee has been subject to a 100% penalty with respect to a personal income tax return.


House Bill 3444 - Change Car Registration Fees
Amend ORS 803.420 to link light vehicle registration fees to the fuel economy rating of the vehicle as set by the U.S. Department of Energy and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Fees would be $40 per year if the vehicle fuel economy rating is more than 25% below the average rating in Oregon, $30 per year if the rating is within 25% above or below the average rating, or $20 per year if the rating is more than 25% above the average rating. Remove the provisions that an electric or hybrid vehicle pays $30 per year in registration fees and a low-speed vehicle pays $60 per year.


Senate Bill 183 - Increase Interstate Speed Limit
Originally written to clarify the authority to establish designated speeds for certain highways, remove references to federal maximum speed limit, and consolidate speed limit laws. The bill removes laws treating urban and rural areas differently, specifically the requirement that interstate speed limits be reduced to 55 mph in the urban areas of Portland, Salem, Eugene, and Medford. The bill retains the speed limit designation for special areas, such as school zones and alleys, and makes other housekeeping-like changes in statutes. As amended by the House Transportation Committee on May 7, the bill would also make cars subject to just the basic rule when traveling on interstate highways -- they would not be subject to a speed limit. Other changes to the bill are similar to House Bill 2501, which authorizes ODOT to increase speed limits for trucks and buses to 65 mph on interstates.


Senate Bill 274 - Suspend for Failure to Pay
Create a new law authorizing suspension of state-issued licenses, certificates, permits, or registrations for failure to pay a monetary obligation to local government if the debt is more than three months past due or more than $100 in arrears. "Licenses, certificates, permits, or registrations" that could be suspended include all that a person is required by state law to possess for an occupation or profession, all annual licenses issued by the Oregon Liquor Control Commission, all driver licenses or permits issued by the Department of Transportation, and all recreational hunting and fishing licenses or permits issued by the State Fish and Wildlife Commission. Local governments participating in the credential suspension program could enter into agreements with OLCC, ODOT, SFWC, and other entities issuing licenses, certificates, permits, or registrations. Persons failing to pay an obligation would be notified by mail and given 30 days to respond before a license, certificate, permit, or registration could be suspended. In response to a notice, an obligor could appeal the local government´s action and request a hearing before an administrative law judge. Any state agency, board, or commission authorized to issue an occupational, professional, or recreational license, certification, permit or registration subject to suspension would be required to record an individual´s Social Security number on an application, or renewal form, for a license, certification, permit or registration and include the number in automated databases containing information about the individual.


Senate Bill 299 - Restrict Display Screen Viewing
Create a new law in ORS Chapter 815 making it a Class B traffic violation to view the display screen of an electronic device when operating a motor vehicle if a person is viewing entertainment or other material that does not aid in the safe operation or navigation of the vehicle. The law would not apply to a person operating a police, fire, ambulance, or emergency vehicle if the person is viewing material that aids in performing emergency activities.


Senate Bill 438 - Increase Vehicle Length Limits
Amend ORS 818.080, the law outlining vehicle limits, to (1) increase from 40 feet to 53 feet the maximum allowable length for a vehicle in combination of vehicles and (2) increase from 60 feet to 75 feet the maximum allowable length for a combination of vehicles, including load. Also, amend ORS 818.100, the law outlining exemptions from maximum size limits, to delete the provision that a motor vehicle transporter towing another vehicle, when operating on a Group 1 or Group 2 highway, may exceed the maximum length for a combination of vehicles if the overall length does not exceed 65 feet.


Senate Bill 823 - Limit Engine Idling
Amend ORS Chapter 811 to make idling a diesel engine for more than five minutes a Class C traffic violation. The law would apply to heavy-duty diesel vehicles with a combined weight over 8,500 lbs., but it would not apply if the vehicle has a trailer with a cooling unit used to refrigerate or freeze cargo, auxiliary equipment that requires the engine to idle to provide power to the equipment, or the reason for idling is traffic congestion. It would also not apply to fire trucks, ambulances, or similar emergency vehicles. Amend ORS Chapter 468 to direct the Environmental Quality Commission to establish and implement a heavy-duty diesel vehicle testing program, including enforcement through civil penalties in an amount to be determined in rulemaking. Heavy-duty diesel vehicle would be defined as " a motor vehicle powered by a compression ignition internal combustion engine using petroleum-based diesel fuel and having a gross vehicle weight rating of 8,500 pounds or actual curb weight, as delivered to the ultimate consumer, of more than 8,499 pounds." Amend ORS 815.300 to require that fixed load vehicles and vehicles proportionally registered under ORS 826.009 and 826.011 must be equipped with a certified pollution control system.


Senate Bill 921 - Link Benefits and Compliance
Amend ORS Chapter 657, Oregon law related to unemployment insurance, to add provisions disqualifying an individual from receiving unemployment benefits if he or she commits certain acts involving alcohol, marijuana, or unlawful drugs, or violates a last chance agreement. Under the bill, an unemployed truck driver could not receive benefits if he or she failed or refused to take a required drug or alcohol test, or refused to cooperate with, subverted, or attempted to subvert a drug or alcohol testing process in any required employment-related test, including refusing or failing to complete proper documentation authorizing a test, refusing or failing to sign a chain of custody form, presenting false identification, placing an adulterant in a specimen for testing, and interfering with the accuracy of test results by diluting or adultering a test specimen.


Senate Joint Resolution 13 - Highway Fund for Policing
Call for a vote of the people in May 2004 to decide whether to amend the Oregon Constitution, Article IX, Section 3a, to allow revenue from taxes on motor vehicle use and fuel to be used for policing of public highways, roads, streets, and roadside rest areas in Oregon. The bill originally called for a vote in the next regular general election.


Senate Joint Resolution 32 - Highway Fund for Education
Call for a vote of the people in the next regular general election to decide whether to amend the Oregon Constitution, Article IX, Section 3a, to allow revenue from taxes on motor vehicle use and fuel to be used for funding public education other than higher education.


Visit the Oregon Legislature Search  page for Bill History information, including access to all various copies of these bills as they advanced in the 2003 Session.

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