The House Subcommittee on Highways, Transit and Pipelines held a hearing today on the Transportation Security Administration's (TSA) new fingerprint and background check regulations for all persons with a commercial driver's license (CDL) hazardous materials endorsement (HME). On behalf of the agricultural retailers and distributors nationwide, the Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA) submitted a written statement outlining the industry's key concerns with these new regulations.

ARA believes that the new fingerprint and background check regulations could cause undue hardship for rural HME drivers, their small business employers and their farm customers.

Another area of concern relates to the fees being imposed by TSA and the states. The CDL HME fees may have an unexpected detrimental impact on agricultural crop input shipments to America's farmers. In the agricultural industry the employer usually pays the CDL application fee, which under the regulations could result in fees surpassing $100. With ag retailers employing several CDL HME drivers, a few hundred dollars on an individual basis many not seem like a lot, but when viewed in conjunction with other costly federal security regulations it has the potential to be quite exorbitant.

Source: Association Release