A plan to completely ban independent truck drivers from the Port of Los Angeles by the end of 2013 was approved Thursday night, the Daily Breeze reports.
The Los Angeles Board of Harbor Commissioners unanimously agreed to a phased-in schedule that will require trucking companies to hire their drivers as employees by Dec. 31, 2013.
The proposed concession agreement will allow licensed motor carriers to use a mix of employees and independent contractor drivers when the $1.6 billion Clean Trucks Program begins Oct. 1, according to port officials.
After that, the port calls for a series of annual hiring requirements for each trucking company. The plan will go into effect next year, when 20 percent of a licensed motor carrier's fleet must be made up of employees by Dec. 31, 2009.
The requirement jumps to a 66percent employee fleet by the end of 2010; 85 percent by the end of 2011; 95 percent by the end of 2012; and full compliance by the end of 2013.
Port officials have said that the plan will hold trucking companies accountable for maintaining big rigs, while also employing properly credentialed drivers.
"The approval of the concession agreement marks a major milestone in creating an efficient, reliable short-haul trucking system that will produce rapid improvements and air quality while supporting the port's long-term business and security-related goals," said S. David Freeman, president of the harbor commission.
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