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Ports of Los Angeles & Long Beach Unveil Plan to Phase Out Older Trucks, Transition to Zero-Emission; Drivers Urge Commissioners to Enforce Law, Demand Trucking Companies Pay for Truck Replacement

Justice for Port Truck Drivers
www.JusticeforPortDrivers.org
PRESS ADVISORY: Friday, November 18, 2016
PRESS CONTACT:  Barb Maynard, (323) 351-9321; barb@mcsonline.org

Port of Los Angeles/Long Beach – On November, 18, 2016, the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach unveiled an update to the ports’ Clean Air Action Plan (CAAP). As a part of the proposed plan, America’s largest port complex proposed the following:

2018: All port trucks that are 10 years or older will be subject to a fee (zero/near-zero emission trucks will be exempt from the fee).

2020: All trucks must meet the Federal 2010 engine emission standard.

2023: New trucks entering the Ports Drayage Truck Registry must meet the Federal standard.

2035: All trucks serving the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach must be zero emissions.

Port truck driver Eddie Rodriguez provided testimony on behalf of the Justice for Port Drivers campaign:

“My name is Eddie Rodriguez and I am an employee driver for the Toll Group. Before working at Toll – in fact during the first truck ban – I was employed by California Cartage’s Container Freight division, misclassified by the company as an ‘independent contractor.’

“When you adopted the first Clean Truck Program, I was forced to pay out of my own pocket for the new truck. Even though I worked hard and was considered to be a very “successful” driver – and even though a subsidy was provided – it broke me. It broke my family, and it continues to break the backs of the thousands of misclassified drivers who haul cargo for America’s largest retailers on and off these docks. It’s wrong and it is also illegal for these companies to charge misclassified drivers for the equipment.

“But for me, I am no longer in that situation. Toll takes responsibility for the truck I drive and I’m able to work hard and provide for my family – including my beautiful new baby girl who was born just two weeks ago. My work now has dignity. And as a Teamster, I have the respect of my employer. Dignity and respect – that’s what American workers are crying out for; that’s what I now have.

“Tonight is just the beginning of this process for you. But I know that when I go home to my family tonight, regardless of what rules you actually adopt, my family will be alright because Toll will be responsible for keeping their fleet in compliance, and my Teamster contract will protect me.

“Every company – and their retail customers – must take responsibility for their equipment. Companies like Toll can do this without subsidies from the port right now and there are many major trucking companies at the ports now with the resources to lease and purchase new clean energy trucks that reduce air pollution. That’s just how business works – well that’s at least how businesses that follow the law, like the Toll Group, work.

“Commissioners, the burden should not be on the back of the drivers. And you as the leader of these two ports should no longer prop up a broken system. Thank you.”

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