PORTS, COMMERCE AND TRANSPORTATION

In order to meet new federal and state mandates relating to air quality, the Ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles proposed a progressive ban for the 16,000 drayage trucks entering the port complex every day. The progressive ban proposal barred the oldest, dirtiest trucks from entering the port first, followed by a series of annual bans that would ultimately require the truck fleet to deploy truck models no older than 2014. Although generally supportive of the ports’ environmental goals, the local trucking industry would be disadvantaged competitively if it were forced to purchase newer, more expensive trucks to meet the ports’ new requirements.

Englander Knabe & Allen was retained by a consortium of over 100 local trucking companies (eventually forming the Harbor Trucking Association) to advocate before the Port Commissions in LA and Long Beach to find a workable solution that would allow the ports to meet their stated environmental goals while allowing smaller and mid-sized trucking companies to continue doing business.

As a result of our efforts, the Ports adopted a new environmental program that allowed for older trucks to remain competitive while incentivizing those who wanted to invest and deploy newer, cleaner truck models. As a result, the trucking industry remained strong and the Ports were able to reduce harmful air emissions (NOx and SOx) by 90%—over two years ahead of schedule. In addition, the formation of the HTA has solidified the political strength of the port trucking industry on dozens of issues in the last few years, including additional environmental regulations, new tariff provisions and the expansion of port terminal facilities.

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