House Transportation Committee weighs new legislation in voting hearing

The House Transportation Committee, led by Majority Chair Ed Neilson, held a meeting today to vote on two pieces of legislation that he said are vital to Pennsylvania’s transportation sector.

House Resolution 322, introduced by state Rep. Kyle Mullins, would encourage Congress to allow people aged 18-20 with a Commercial Driver’s License to participate in interstate commerce activities.

“We are facing an increasing shortage of qualified truck drivers not only in Pennsylvania but across the county.” Neilson said. “In 2022, our state’s truckers moved 897 million tons of freight, valued at $1.1 trillion which speaks volumes about their value to our state’s economy.”

Neilson said Pennsylvania ranks fifth in the country in freight moved.

As part of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration launched the Safe Driver Apprenticeship Pilot Program to expand the pool of qualified CDL drivers.

The committee also voted on H.B. 816, authored by state Rep. Jose Giral. It would require that tow truck operators in Philadelphia provide photographic evidence of  violations to vehicle owners who wish to appeal the towing and storage fees to the Parking Hearing Examiner.

“Philadelphia citizens already have a soured opinion about their ability to park anywhere in the city without the fear of financial burden caused by a towed vehicle,” Neilson said. “I hope this legislation will help ease their minds as it provides recourse for them to appeal any potential violations in a fair and just manner.”

Neilson said he hopes both bills will have a vote soon by the full House.