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In mid-January 2012, the Illinois Truck Enforcement Association, the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police, and the Illinois Sheriffs’ Association were notified via US Mail that local police had received approval for access to CVIEW, a state run computer database.  CVIEW stands for the “Commercial Vehicle Information Exchange Window”.  Until this time, only police officers from the various state regulatory agencies had access to CVIEW.  Before we dive into what this means for law enforcement and the trucking industry, here is the story on how this came to be.

Around the year 2000, retired Lombard police officer (and ITEA board member) Gary Johnston began talking to the late Mick Ramirez at the Illinois Secretary of State about local access to CVIEW.   Gary and Mick had a strong working relationship, and there was mutual agreement that information in the CVIEW system would be useful for local law enforcement.  Gary was also a founding member of NITES (Northern Illinois Truck Enforcement Specialists), a pre-cursor to the ITEA.  Like the ITEA, NITES was working to help professionalize truck cops in Illinois.

Through a series of retirements that eventually ended the NITES organization, the campaign for local access to CVIEW lost steam as well.  Over the years, conversations about CVIEW continued between representatives from state agencies and police officers that would eventually launch the ITEA.  When the ITEA began in 2009, the founding members set local access to CVIEW as a primary goal.

Once the ITEA was up and running, ITEA board members began the process of lobbying those responsible for CVIEW.  It quickly became apparent that while most CVIEW representatives agreed locals should have access, there was justified concern.  Past attempts to grant local police privileges exclusive to the state agencies had not gone well.  The ITEA set out to prove local police could be held accountable.  New relationships were built, trust established, and support rallied.  Once some of the bugs were worked out of the system, access was approved.

CVIEW may be a fantastic resource to truck enforcement officers in Illinois, but how does this help the trucking industry?  Isn’t CVIEW just another tool for local cops to hold down the truckers?  Those are fair questions, and the short answer is this…time=money.  Here are two examples of how CVIEW access will save truckers both:

Registration Each April and July, truck officers are on the hunt for expired truck plates.  Many times what appears to be an expired plate is found based on the sticker and/or the status in the computer system. The driver and the owner will swear up and down they have paid for the plate.  The police officer has two options: write the ticket and the trucker can bring proof to court, or wait on the phone for an extended period of time with an already overburdened SOS staff.  With CVIEW, local can immediately see the true status of the registration and send the legal trucks on their way.

Permits For those involved in moving oversize/overweight loads, you know the frustrations of being stopped by police in each town along the route to inspect the permit…and then waiting for the officer to confirm the permit with Springfield.  This time consuming process will be minimized by officers with access to CVIEW because they will have access to the permit database.  You may get stopped, but the wait time will be greatly reduced.

Truckers – please know the ITEA will be working closely with the state agencies to make sure a quality use of this system is employed.  Be confident the police members of the ITEA with access to CVIEW will be held to even a higher standard.

Police officers – let’s do this right.  Our friends at IDOT, ISP, SOS, ICC, and IDOR are entrusting us with a unique opportunity to prove our quality.  We owe it to them, and the trucking industry, to use this system fairly and professionally.

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