Archive for January, 2019

Diabetes and driver jobs

Wednesday, January 9th, 2019

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) earlier last year announced a final rule revising federal regulations permitting individuals with a stable insulin regimen and properly controlled insulin-treated diabetes mellitus (ITDM) to be qualified to operate commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) in interstate commerce, a move that will affect driver jobs.

Previously, individuals with ITDM were prohibited from driving CMVs in interstate commerce unless they obtained an exemption from FMCSA.  The action removes major administrative and financial burdens for this population of CMV operators while maintaining a high level of safety.

The rule enables a certified medical examiner (ME) to grant an individual with ITDM a Medical Examiner’s Certificate, MCSA-5876, for up to 12 months.

To do so, the treating clinician – the healthcare professional who manages, and prescribes insulin for, the treatment of the individual’s diabetes – provides the ITDM Assessment Form, MCSA-5870, to the certified ME indicating that the individual maintains a stable insulin regimen and proper control of his or her diabetes.

The certified ME is then responsible for determining if the individual meets FMCSA’s physical qualification standards and can operate CMVs in interstate commerce.

“This final action delivers economic savings to affected drivers and our agency, and streamlines processes by eliminating unnecessary regulatory burdens and redundancy,” said FMCSA Administrator Raymond P. Martinez.  “It’s a win-win for all parties involved.”

The final rule will eliminate the exemption program that currently requires individuals with ITDM to incur recurring costs to renew and maintain their exemptions.  FMCSA estimates this will save the nearly 5,000 individuals with ITDM that currently have exemptions more than $5 million per year more than what they would endure under the exemption program.  The final rule will also save new ITDM exemption applicants and their associated motor carriers approximately $215,000 annually in opportunity and compliance costs related with the exemption program’s waiting period.

As an agency, FMCSA will save more than $1 million per year over the next three years in costs associated with administering the diabetes exemption program.

Do companies plan to hire for driver jobs?

Wednesday, January 9th, 2019

New labor predictions demonstrate that some companies may be hiring for driver jobs in the new year.

Nearly 55 percent of companies plan to hire in the coming year, according to a survey conducted by global outplacement and executive coaching firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

Fewer companies reported that economic fears and soft demand would negatively impact hiring.

Nine percent of companies stated low demand and economic uncertainty would slow hiring, compared to 24 percent of respondents who reported this in the 2017 survey.

Employers also report confidence in the economy this year, according to the survey. Over 63 percent of employers feel the economy is stronger than last year.

That’s compared to 47.6 percent who reported this in 2017.

Another 26.2 percent feel the economy is on par with last year, versus 49.2 percent who reported this in 2017.

In fact, employers at U.S.-based companies have announced 494,775 cuts through November, according to Challenger tracking.

That’s compared to 386,347 cuts announced through the same period last year. Meanwhile, 1,323 CEOs have left their posts through November, the most since 2008, when 1,361 CEOs left their posts through the same month.

Climate recommendations may affect driver jobs

Thursday, January 3rd, 2019

A new statewide council addressing climate change may affect driver jobs.

The Governor’s Council on Climate Change (GC3), which will establish a sustainable path for achieving Connecticut’s long-term vision for decarbonizing our economy in order to address the problem of human-induced climate change. The policy recommendations are focused on three broad objectives: zero-carbon electricity generation; clean transportation; and clean, efficient, and resilient buildings.

In addition, to underscore Connecticut’s commitment to work with other nearby states on designing a regional low-carbon transportation policy proposal that would cap and reduce carbon emissions from the transportation sector through a cap-and-invest or other pricing program, Governor Malloy announced that Connecticut will join the Transportation Climate Initiative (TCI) – a coalition of nine states and the District of Columbia that will work closely over the next year to develop a proposal that can be implemented across the region.

“Do not be fooled by the climate change deniers in Washington, climate change is real and if we do not take significant action now to reduce carbon emissions the harm to our economy, communities, and the planet will be irrevocable,” Governor Malloy said. “Climate change is one of the most pressing issues the world faces today and the recommendations contained within this report will ensure that Connecticut is meeting its statutory and moral obligations to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. I am thankful to all the members of the GC3, including state agency officials, business leaders, scientists, environmental advocates who have dedicated their time in developing solutions to decarbonize Connecticut’s economy.”

“As not only a scientist, but a father, I am gravely concerned about the speed at which climate change is occurring, as evidenced from the recent United Nations IPCC Special Report and the Fourth National Climate Assessment,” Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Commissioner Rob Klee said. “While the recommendations contained with the GC3 report are ambitious and will require the effort of all parts of civil society, I will remind everyone that we are a nation that has done big things in the past and it is time to step up and make addressing climate change this generation’s moon shot. We have done it before, and if we do not act now, it will be too late to reverse the damage.”

In addition to Connecticut, other states that have joined the TCI include Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, and the District of Columbia.

“States are the incubators of great ideas,” Governor Malloy said regarding the coalition. “By working collaboratively across state lines to develop a solution to curb transportation emissions, Connecticut, along with other forward-thinking states, will design and demonstrate effective policies, so that when the federal government stops listening to coal lobbyists and returns to listening to scientists, there will be a path forward to address climate change on a national basis.”