85(R) - 2017
Transportation & Infrastructure
Relating to the operation of vehicles transporting fluid milk;
authorizing a fee.
No significant fiscal implication to the State is anticipated.
Current law states that a vehicle used exclusively to transport milk may be operated on a public highway if the vehicle meets specific length requirements and weighs no more than 68,000 pounds. SB 1382 would establish a new subchapter allowing for the operation of a vehicle combination used to transport fluid milk weighing no more than 90,000 pounds and would allow the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to establish a permit. To qualify for the permit under this subchapter a fee of $1,200 (75% of the fee would go to the state highway fund, 15% divided among counties designated in the permit, and 10% to the DMV) would have to be paid and would last for one year. This would be an exclusive permit, banning all others, and would prohibit county or municipalities from requiring a permit, fee, or license.
Vote Recommendation Notes
Though portions of this bill are good such as allowing a greater capacity of milk to be carried on public roads and prohibiting local regulations, other portions are a concern such as establishing a permit program and requiring a fee. We believe that specifically licensing these different vocations is unnecessarily burdensome and complex. It is well within the authority of the state to establish a permit and user fee type system for those that place an extra burden on the state's road infrastructure. A more comprehensive permitting plan, based solely on weight and not the contents would provide a streamlined process that all can adhere to and would likely not require continued adjustments by the legislature.
Though we would prefer to see that type of system implemented, we still recognize that highways and roads are government property and as such within its authority to regulate. Therefore, we remain neutral on SB 1383.
Texas Farm Bureau
County Judges and Commissioners Association of Texas
Texas Association of Counties