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Supreme Court Allows Cities to Regulate Towing Companies

Thursday, February 06, 2014
By: Anthony E. Palmer, Jr. ./ AldenLaw

In its January 21, 2014 decision, the Supreme Court of Ohio held that a state law that prohibited municipalities from licensing, registering, or regulating towing companies was unconstitutional. In the case, Cleveland sued the State of Ohio over a state law passed in 2003 that provided for statewide regulation of towing companies. The state law expressly prohibited cities from imposing regulations on towing companies. The Supreme Court found this ban to be unconstitutional because it limited the power of cities to enact similar regulations that were not in conflict with state law. This decision now allows cities to regulate towing companies, in addition to PUCO regulations, so long as the city regulations are not in conflict with state law. The court did not decide whether Cleveland’s towing regulations conflicted with Ohio’s regulations. That dispute will be settled another day.

E-Logging Update

Wednesday, January 15, 2014
It appears that the FMCSA is close to releasing proposals which will require electronic logging devices to be placed in all trucks. They are hoping to have these out within the next 30 days. As many of us are aware, this has been in work in progress for years now.

We currently have a list of clients who have already installed ELD’s into their fleets, and the feedback has been very positive. They have helped improve HOS issues and driver morale has been very positive after the switch.

We will keep you updated as more information is released. Don’t hesitate to contact us at Dawson Transportation Services with questions regarding feedback on ELD’s.

FMCSA Proposes to Remove Violations that are Dismissed in Court

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Another great article from our friend Tony Palmer of AldenLaw.  Thanks, Tony!

By: Tony Palmer, AldenLaw

In an unprecedented step in the right direction, the FMCSA released a proposal on December 2, 2013, to modify the Motor Carrier Management Information System to reflect dismissals or reductions of violations in state or local courts. The FMCSA changed its course in response to two lawsuits filed by OOIDA, in which enforcement officials refused to remove violations from carriers’ and drivers’ safety records after the violations were dismissed in state courts. The new rule will change the current policy and remove violations that are dismissed in court. This proposed change is long overdue and will finally provide some due process safeguards for carriers and drivers. The deadline to provide public comment to FMCSA on the proposal is January 2, 2014. Please call John Alden or Tony Palmer at 614-221-1306 with any questions regarding this notice.

For questions, please contact us at Dawson Transportation Services.

FMCSA Revokes Roughly 2,000 Freight Broker Licenses

Tuesday, December 10, 2013
Almost 10% of the nation’s freight brokers have had their license revoked following new federal regulations that took effect requiring a bond increase from $10,000 to $75,000.

Roughly 2,000 brokers have been affected since the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration began the broker license revocation process after the start of December. We are not sure how many brokers voluntarily surrendered their licenses compared to how many had their authority revoked. According to one estimate there are more than 21,000 freight brokers in the U.S.

If your company has had any issues with this requirement, feel free to contact us to discuss your options.

Reminder: FMCSA Encouraging Carriers to Update Their Registration

Friday, October 11, 2013

The FMCSA is reminding carriers that the biennial MCS-150 update requirement is being enforced. Failure to update as required will result in the DOT # being deactivated and a fine.

Please see the following links for more information:

Truckinginfo: Owner Operator News

FMCSA Biennial Update Notice

FMCSA Registration Options

BMV To Downgrade CDLS

Friday, September 20, 2013
The BMV has decided that it will begin downgrading CDL drivers who have failed to properly certify their current CDL status. FMCSA requires drivers to self-certify their status to the BMV and in certain circumstances file their medical card with the Bureau. Over 25% of the current CDL holders in Ohio have failed to file the proper paperwork to the Bureau. Paperwork must be filed by January 30, 2014.

For more information on this matter check the BMV website at and look under the Online Services category for “Commercial Drivers License Self-Certification,” or contact anyone at Dawson Transportation Services.

Lower E-Logging Prices - Time to Hop On?

Wednesday, September 04, 2013

In the September 2nd edition of Transport Topics, an article summarized how electronic logging device makers believe the federal government’s plan to require most truckers to use the devices will cost the industry less than anticipated. Previously the cost of these ELD’s were around $2,000.  Now you can get them for as low as $300.

We have spoken with some of our clients who have already installed ELD’s into their equipment, and they couldn’t be happier about their decision. It has increased productivity, accuracy in their logs, and satisfaction among employees. Not to mention, it has also helped improve their current HOS score.

Now let’s put an insurance spin on this…

When it comes to renewal time and an insurance company is either looking at renewing a policy or writing a new policy, what is one of the first steps an underwriter will take? You got it - they are going to get on the SAFER website and take a look at the policyholder's HOS score. This information is one of major factors that an underwriter takes into consideration when determining the appropriate cost of an insurance program.

Also, let’s not forget that while other carrier’s scores in your same peer group are improving, it has an adverse effect on the other members of the same group.

Please feel free to contact us with any questions or concerns with how ELD’s are impacting your current peer groups' scores in the HOS arena.

House Bill to Raise Minimum Limits

Wednesday, August 14, 2013
Below is another article written by Tony Palmer of AldenLaw. The article details a new bill introduced in Congress that would raise bodily injury/property damage insurance for motor carriers from $750K to $4.4 million.

Once again, we would like to thank AldenLaw for providing us with this information.

Local Income Taxes on Motor Carriers

Monday, August 05, 2013

Below  you will find an article written by Tony Palmer, of AldenLaw. This article reflects on a pending case in the Supreme Court of Ohio regarding local income taxes on motor carriers. The outcome will affect every motor carrier in the State of Ohio.

AldenLaw was founded in 1975 by John L. Alden, who has practiced in transportation and warehousing law for twenty-five years. John's transportation clients range from local bus and motor carriers to the largest nationwide carriers, including specialized carriers of all types. He also represents shippers, warehousing companies and freight brokers, including small local operations and national firms. A fast-growing segment of clientele are shippers requesting guidance in the ever-changing transportation and logistics areas, as well as new motor carriers entering into business and existing carriers dealing with safety issues.


For any questions please feel free to contact us here at Dawson Transportation Services.

CSA 2010 - Follow-Up Information

Friday, July 19, 2013

Once again, everyone at Dawson Transportation Services would like to thank Young Truck Sales for putting together “CSA 2010: Yesterday, Today, & Tomorrow.” We truly enjoyed being able to get together with many other professionals in the industry and present these ever changing and important topics.

For all of those who were unable to make the seminar and are interested in obtaining a flash drive of the presentations, please feel free to contact Matt Coleman at Dawson Transportation. As a reminder, the topics covered were:

  • A Background on CSA”- Dave Bose, Great West Casualty Insurance Company
  • CSA and How it Effects You”- Matt Coleman, Dawson Transportation Services
  • Regulatory Update from PUCO”- Butch Orbovich, Transportation Department Director at the PUCO

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