Arkansas Trucking Association

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Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s published a final rule to ease the transition of military personnel into civilian careers driving commercial motor vehicles by simplifying the process for current and former military personnel to earn a commercial driver’s license or commercial learner’s permit.

Instead of 90 days, individuals will now have one year to apply for a skills test waiver if their military position required the operation of a CMV. States will also be able to accept applications from active duty military personnel who are stationed in the state and to administer the written and skills test for the CLP or CDL.

The CDL or CLP will be issued in the state the veteran resides if he or she passes the CLP or CDL test.

“FMCSA believes that this would give former military personnel a better opportunity to obtain a CDL in a way that will not negatively affect safety,” the agency stated in its proposal. The agency also said it is has concluded that lengthening the waiver period permanently “would ease the transition of service members and veterans to civilian life.”

According to the agency, more than 10,000 separated military personnel have taken advantage of the skills-test waiver.

The final rule was published just days after the FMCSA announced nearly $2.3 million in grants, double the amount of funds granted in 2014, to technical and community colleges across the country to help train veterans for jobs as commercial bus and truck drivers.

The extension of the skills test waiver and grant program for CMV training are both provisions of December 2015’s FAST Act. There is no final rule yet for the military pilot program, also required by the FAST Act, to allow select military personnel between the ages of 18 and 21 to operate CMVs in interstate commerce.

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Arkansas Trucking Association
PO Box 3476 (72203)
1401 West Capitol Ave.
Little Rock, AR 72201

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You are here: Home News In Brief New Rule Simplifies CDL Process for Vets