Late last weekend, Congressional leaders in the House and Senate came to an agreement on a final spending package for the 2017 fiscal year to provide funding for the government through September, and swiftly passed the legislation before government funding expired today. And while ATA, dozens of coalition partners and ATA members have been working aggressively with Congress to include F4A language in the omnibus spending package, unfortunately, that avenue was closed off as part of a larger compromise on a number of issues to keep the government from shutting down.
As part of the final negotiations, almost all policy riders, including F4A, were removed from the final agreed upon package. While we are disappointed in this result, recognizing that a “clean” spending bill was always a possibility, ATA and our allies have already worked to line up new potential vehicles to get this critical language over the finish line.
At this time, ATA and our partners are intensifying our congressional efforts to ensure we maximize our opportunities in both authorizing and funding legislation this year; fostering greater support from DOT, FMCSA and the President on this issue; and reviewing potential preemption options by FMCSA under existing law. Moving forward, achieving an F4A solution remains our highest priority, and while we are disappointed in this week’s outcome, we will continue to work aggressively and pursue every avenue until it is resolved.