ExpressTruckTax
704.234.6005

ExpressTruckTax Blog

Showing posts with label department of transportation. Show all posts
Showing posts with label department of transportation. Show all posts

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Could a Disregard of Ethics Cost You More?

0
Department of Transformation Elaine Chao secretary of transportation stock in Vulcan Materials CoDespite the conflict of interest and ethics agreement signed, Transportation Secretary, Elaine L. Chao has now gained 13 percent in stock earnings since agreeing to receive a cash payout for stocks she owns in Vulcan Materials Company. Vulcan Materials Company is America's largest supplier of material used in road-paving and building. It is reported that the 13 percent increase is equivalent to $40,000 on top of the $400,000 she has already made from the stock had she relinquished them on the date she had agreed to, April 2018. 

The disregard of ethics from Chao has a former director of the Office of Government Ethics, Walter Shaub curious as to what message this is sending to the staff of the Department of Transportation (DOT). You may be wondering what this has to do with you, but with the Heavy Vehicle Use Tax (HVUT) deadline approaching you may find yourself shelling out more in taxes than you should.

What To Know About HVUT

The HVUT is an annual fee that is estimated for vehicles exceeding a gross weight of 55,000 pounds to pay to the government to help pay for construction on roads. It is a significant source of transportation funding. HVUT revenue goes toward financing a broad spectrum of transportation programs including, highway infrastructure, improvements and much more.  The HVUT rate is determined by calculating the gross taxable weight. You can find your vehicles gross taxable weight by adding: 

  • The unloaded weight of the vehicle fully equipped
  • The unloaded weight of all trailers or semi-trailers fully equipped used with the vehicle
  • The weight of the max load customarily carried on the vehicle or trailers typically used 

If a vehicles gross taxable weight is below 55,000 pounds no taxes are required to be paid, but if a vehicle is between 55,000 pounds to 75,000 pounds the tax rate is $100 plus $22 per 1,000 pounds over 55,000 pounds. Any vehicle exceeding 75,000 pounds is required to pay a tax rate of $550.

Could HVUT Rates Change?

The lack of ethics with the DOT starting from the head down can cause unnecessary highway infrastructure to be conducted. With unnecessary improvement comes unnecessary payment, which could ultimately make higher HVUT rates necessary to keep up with the cost of new infrastructure. It is unlikely that this one incident can cause such a dramatic change, however, if what Shaub suggests is true, there may be more cracks in the code of ethics discovered amongst the DOT.

File Your Form 2290 Today!

Our sister product, Truck Services of North America (TSNAmerica) is now accepting over the phone filing. Filing in advance is a great way to save money and time. Avoid filing until 2020 when you choose to file with TSNAmerica. The process with TSNAmerica allows for a paper-free filing experience. Filing just got simpler! 

Benefits of Filing With ExpressTruckTax

1. Pay your taxes with a credit or debit card!
2. ExpressTruckTax is an IRS-Authorized Form 2290 provider.
3. You can get the Express Package. This package makes sure you never miss a deadline with postal, text and email reminders sent in timely manners for your benefit.






Read More »

Thursday, April 25, 2019

What Are The Silent Protocols When On The Highway

0
What Are The Silent Protocols When On The HighwayAs every trucker knows there are quite a bit of rules and regulations required from DOT; however, veteran truckers have been laying down their own laws for some time now. Although not set in stone we are
siding with the veterans on these unspoken protocols.

Don’t Take Your Time At The Pump

Every minute counts for truckers. Whether or not your load is on time, ultimately falls on you. This is why taking your time at the pump to grab a ‘quick’ snack or venture off to the restroom for ‘a second’ matters. The trucker waiting to fuel-up is on a time crunch, like you. Taking up multiple spots is just as inconvenient as using two sinks to was both of your hands. If you want respect as a trucker you are going to have to give it.

What’s In Your Haul Stays In Your Haul

If you grew up with conservative parents you have heard the saying ‘what happens in this house stays in this house’ and when you’re on the road your house is your cab. Discussing what you’re carrying may sound like a great way to make small talk with fellow truckers, but in honesty, you are too familiar with other haulers and random travelers motives. Cargo theft is a real thing and you don’t want to make yourself a bigger target than you already are. To you, your cargo may not be all that exciting, but thieves can see plenty of opportunity in ‘free’ goods.

Make Friends, Play Nice

No, this isn’t grade school, but being courteous to a fellow trucker should be a given. Truckers spend long hours on the road and getting just a glimpse of positivity when traveling can make someone's day/trip. Whether you are a veteran or fresh meat on the CDL freight those small gestures like helping a trucker safely get over several lanes is what makes trucking a real brotherhood.

Always Toot Your Horn

Seeing someone pump their arm with anticipation that you’ll give a good pull to your air horn may be the biggest trucking clich√© there is. However, no matter what mood you're in it has to be done. This gives truckers a positive image and who wants to be a part of a brotherhood full of stuck up and grouchy truckers. It’s called public relations and it’s a part of the job.

Give Your Jake Brake A Break

What Are The Silent Protocols When On The Highway
There are a good bit of truckers who don’t mind hearing ‘the song of their people,’ but we guarantee that there’s not one trucker who will commend you for using your Jake brake at 2 am. 

If you're in a parking lot at 2 am, more than likely you’re surrounded by restless truckers attempting to get some shut eye before starting their long day over once again. It's okay to give the Jake brake some rest as well. We know you're a trucker there's no need to tell people at the crack of dawn.

By following these unspoken rules the veterans will thank you and the newbies will want to be like you. Develop these habits and you’ll be on your way to veteran trucker status in no time.



Read More »

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

What Massive Collision Is Haunting The US Senate and House?

0
Under-ride CrashSince 2017 companion bipartisan bills regarding the use of under-ride guards for road safety have been introduced. In March 2019 the idea was reintroduced and quickly dismissed by ATA and OOIDA. ATA stated that ‘the government should focus more on crash avoidance technologies and
strategies than expensive and unproven collision mitigation equipment.”

The U.S Senate and House have proposed these bills in remembrance of the thousands of victims of under-ride crashes and at the recommendation of the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB).

In a recent press release announcing the bill, Representative Mark DeSaulnie (D-CA) stated that at least 300 victims are killed each year from under-ride crashes.

As of now, trailer rear guards (DOT bumpers) are required by law, but the bill’s sponsors say that the current standards are outdated. In rebuttal to this claim OOIDA President, Todd Spencer noted ‘we agree that the underride guards on the back of trailers could be improved, but the proposals as written go too far in broadly, retroactively requiring them on all trucks and trailers. His final statement was that trucking is a diverse industry and attaching side under-ride guards is not a simple task to require them to be attached on all equipment.

The indifference over the topic between the House and Senate versus trucking advocates could essentially go on and on, however, it is okay to assume that everyone wants the same thing which is safer roads. There is no trucker who would want to be a part of a tragic under-ride crash and there is no just-lawmaker who would feel content with having the opportunity to do something and remain silent and out of the conversation.

A Cause With A Name 


The Stop Underrides Act, S. 2219, formally known as the Roya, AnnaLeah, and Mary Comprehensive Underride Protection Act of 2017 (RAMCUP Act of 2017), was created in memory of 3 lives lost due to underride crashes. The 3 victims mothers, Marianne Karth, and Lois Durso originally drafted the bill in hopes to prevent under-ride crashes everywhere.

Lois Durso, mother of 26-year old Roya, who lost her life in 2004 recently told reporters, “it is not the crash that kills, it’s the underride. If you can prevent the under-ride, there’s a chance the vehicle occupants will survive.”

The Opposition


Although companion bills have been drafted since 2017, the study to extend underride protection has been going on since 1969 by the Department of Transportation. That is roughly 15,000 deaths that could have been prevented. The U.S Senate and House do not have to rely on the ATA or the OOIDA to make side under-ride guards a requirement, but there are other methods that can help in preventing under-ride crashes.

According to Marianne Karth opposition has come from the trucking industry since 1977 by both manufacturers and haulers. These two parties back their opposition with wanting to see the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) provide automobiles with capabilities to prevent cars from crashing into trucks. 

Karth, as well as other side under-ride guard advocates, commend 4 major trailer manufacturers for their progress to install guards, and also nods the individuals and representatives from the trucking industry involved in her Under-ride Roundtable.

Although those select manufacturers are praised for making progress, Karth has mentioned several times on her blog, dedicated to her two daughters, AnnaLeah and Mary, that she will not give up the fight to seek further action. 

US Senate and House
Saving someone else from experiencing what both Durso and Karth are going through is the overall goal. Contrary to what ATA and OOIDA believe the requirements these two grieving mothers and lawmakers are hoping to put into place is not designed to cost those in the industry more money.

The requirement is in hopes that lives will be saved and tragic under-rides will cease. To find out more about the tragedies that have sparked this bill, or see how you can help visit http://annaleahmary.com or https://stopunderrides.org.



Read More »

Monday, December 31, 2018

Are You Ready for the Upcoming UCR Deadline?

0
ExpressTruckTax has some excellent news for the trucking industry! You are now able to complete your annual Unified Carrier Registration process for 2019.


Unified Carrier Registration, or UCR, requires that drivers and companies who operate a commercial motor vehicle for interstate or international commerce, register their business with the state and pay an annual fee based on the size of the fleet.

If you’re a broker, private carrier, or freight forwarder, you are required to register and pay also.

When Do I Need To Register & Pay My UCR Fees?

Great question! You have until April 1 to register and pay your annual fees UCR for 2019.

Here’s what you’ll have to pay this year and next for UCR:



Where Can I Register & Pay UCR Fees?

You can register, process, and pay for your Unified Carrier Registration, or UCR, fees in one place at the Official UCR Board Certified Registration website.

April 1st will be here before you know it, so take a moment and handle your UCR requirements today while you still have time!


Read More »

Friday, March 23, 2018

Are You Ready for the Upcoming UCR Deadline?

0

ExpressTruckTax has some excellent news for the trucking industry! After nearly a 90-day delay, you are now able to complete your annual Unified Carrier Registration process for 2018.

Unified Carrier Registration, or UCR, requires that drivers and companies who operate a commercial motor vehicle for interstate or international commerce, register their business with the state and pay an annual fee based on the size of the fleet.

Luckily, the UCR fees for this year have been reduced by 9.1%; it doesn’t get much better than that!

You can expect that UCR fees will increase slightly for 2019. However, they will still be 4.6% lower than the fees you paid in 2017.

If you’re a broker, private carrier, or freight forwarder, you are required to register and pay also.

Why The Delay for UCR?


UCR’s usually are available on October 1 and close on December 31; however, this year was a different story due to legal questions centered around a proposal that was issued last September by the Department of Transportation (DOT).

The proposal sparked a lawsuit to be filed by the Small Business in Transportation Coalition against the UCR Board. To make a long story short, the coalition claimed that the UCR Board violated federal open meetings laws for the new fee structure and 2018 registration period to be discussed.

The court was in agreement that the UCR Board failed to provide the proper notice to the public about the meetings but decided to keep the decisions that were made by the board, but what does this mean for you?!

When Do I Need To Register & Pay My UCR Fees?

Great question! You have until April 5 to register and pay your annual fees UCR for 2018.

Here’s what you’ll have to pay this year and next for UCR:



Where Can I Register & Pay UCR Fees?

You can register, process, and pay for your Unified Carrier Registration, or UCR, fees in one place at Official UCR Board Certified Registration website.

April 5th will be here before you know it, so take a moment and handle your UCR requirements today while you still have time!
Read More »

ExpressTruckTax Blog

E-file your HVUT Form 2290 with ExpressTruckTax.