If you live in Illinois and pay any attention to the news media, there is a battle brewing between promoting private industry and reducing the size of government. Regardless of where you stand politically, government does get things right sometimes! Beginning April 1st, a revolution in the world of apportioned registration takes place which has been thirty years in the making. Read on to see what the fuss is all about!
Interstate truckers domiciled in Illinois – the shadow of April 1st is darkening your doorway. If you have not renewed your IRP, you are running out of time. There are only two business days left to get it done. The early bird gets the worm, and the late bird, well, gets an expensive overweight on registration ticket.
The irony of truck enforcement officers being out in force on April 1st looking for expired apportioned plates isn’t a joke at all. There’s no April fool’s day laugh here. If your vehicles are not properly registered and you are stopped by police officer, the vehicle is overweight from pound zero.
The officer has full authority to take you to the scale for weighing. The entire gross weight for the vehicle or combination of vehicles will be measured, and the fine is based on the full annual cost of the registration which covers the weight. The maximum possible fine is $3191.00 plus court costs…it can get expensive.
New this year is the FRP, which is an acronym for the “Full Reciprocity Plan”. In 2014, the International Registration Plan members voted to incorporate this for all member jurisdictions in 2015. This means all the lower 48 states and all Canadian provinces.
Prior to the FRP, a carrier would individually select which jurisdiction they wished to register weight, and how much weight they wished to carry in each jurisdiction. For instance, the carrier could choose to carry 80,000 pounds in Illinois, Indiana and Michigan, but only 77,000 in Wisconsin and Iowa.
This caused a few problems. First, it made mileage calculations much more complex for both the carriers and the base jurisdiction.
Second, some honest carriers may not have realized they had registered for lower weights in one jurisdiction and then sent a truck into it heavy. Or maybe they forgot to register in that state at all!
Third, unscrupulous carriers would exploit the system to pay lower mileage rates hoping to not get caught roadside.
Well, those days are a distant memory. When police officers see new cab cards from all member jurisdictions, including the 2016 Illinois version, the maximum weight requested by the carrier will be assigned across all jurisdictions.
If the carrier wants 80,000 pounds in Illinois, he will also be receiving 80,000 pounds in Washington, Maine and Florida even if he never travels there. What hasn’t changed is the carrier must still track the miles traveled in each state or province and report them to the base jurisdiction.
Things have come a long ways since the days of regulated trucking when trucks had dozens of license plates stuck all over the grill. This gave way to the pro-rate bingo plates, then single state IRP plates, and now the FRP.
Government may move slow, but a landmark in interstate trucking has finally been reached.