Trucking Deregulation:

Proposed Sunset of ICC's Trucking Regulatory Responsibilities

RCED-87-107: Published: Apr 23, 1987. Publicly Released: May 4, 1987.

Additional Materials:

Contact:

Kenneth M. Mead
(202) 512-3000
contact@gao.gov

 

Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800
youngc1@gao.gov

In response to a congressional request, GAO: (1) assessed the merits of retaining or eliminating certain Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) trucking regulatory functions; and (2) estimated the budgetary impact of deregulation on ICC.

GAO found that: (1) ICC had eight ancillary trucking regulatory functions, for which it spent about 483 staff years in fiscal year (FY) 1985; (2) the ICC labor effort has decreased by 13 percent and is expected to decrease an additional 5 years in FY 1988; (3) the budgetary effects of deregulation would depend on which functions Congress eliminated and how other agencies met those responsibilities; (4) while there is broad support for continued Department of Transportation (DOT) regulation of the trucking industry's safety practices and insurance coverage, there is little evidence of how ICC improves safety through its limited monitoring role; (5) the existing disparities in insurance coverage requirements for private carriers and for-hire carriers may not have merit, since insurance requirements promote safety; (6) there was no consensus on the continuing value of ICC promulgation and enforcement of rules regarding liability responsibility for cargo damage; and (7) neither DOT nor the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) plan to collect the needed truck data if Congress eliminates the ICC data-gathering role.

Matters for Congressional Consideration

  1. Status: Closed - Not Implemented

    Comments: Congressional response to this recommendation was conditional on congressional action on trucking deregulation. There has been no action by Congress on proposed legislation.

    Matter: If Congress acts favorably on proposed deregulatory legislation, it may wish to consider revising the provisions in section 30 of the Motor Carrier Act of 1980, which specify insurance requirements for motor carriers, so as to make the requirements for private and for-hire carriers identical.

  2. Status: Closed - Not Implemented

    Comments: Congressional response to this recommendation was conditional on congressional action on trucking deregulation, which has not taken place.

    Matter: If Congress takes further action on deregulatory legislation, it may wish to consider either retaining the Carmack Amendment as statutory law, or replacing by statute both the statutory and common law cargo damage liability requirements, leaving such requirements solely to contractual agreements between the carrier and the shipper.

  3. Status: Closed - Not Implemented

    Comments: Congressional response to this recommendation was conditional on congressional action on trucking deregulation, which has not taken place.

    Matter: Congress may also wish to consider, in any deregulatory legislation, the need to restructure the collection of data on the trucking industry in the federal government to ensure that public and private needs for data are met in the most cost-effective manner if the ICC role in data collection is terminated. Congress may wish to mandate that DOT act to coordinate such a restructuring along the lines described above.

Recommendation for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed - Not Implemented

    Comments: DOT does not believe that further action is needed. There has been no change in its position since the recommendation was made.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Transportation should direct appropriate department officials to develop a long-term assessment of requirements for and costs of data on truck transportation, based on the needs of various users in the federal and state governments and in the private sector, and, in conjunction with OMB, coordinate data gathering among DOT, ICC, Census, and other truck transportation data-gathering agencies.

    Agency Affected: Department of Transportation

 

Explore the full database of GAO's Open Recommendations »

Sep 14, 2016

Sep 2, 2016

Aug 8, 2016

Jul 28, 2016

Jul 13, 2016

Jul 7, 2016

Jun 24, 2016

Jun 21, 2016

May 26, 2016

Looking for more? Browse all our products here