Before the Interstate Commerce Comission: Council Gives Views on ICC Trucking Entry Proceedings

by Barry Bosworth on January 23, 1978
by Barry Bosworth, Thomas M. Lenard, Milton Kafoglis, Roy A. Nierenberg and Thomas D. Hopkins

The Council on Wage and Price Stability¬∑ today supported efforts of the Interstate Commerce Commission to reduce “frivolous” protests in applications for new interstate trucking authorities. The Commission has requested suggestions and proposals on this subject and intends to institute a rulemaking proceeding. To operate as an interstate common carrier, a trucker must hold a certificate granted by the ICC which specifies routes or areas which may be served and commodities which may be carried. Applications for such certificates may be challenged easily by existing carriers. The Commission is concerned that the ease of making protests has resulted in an excessive number of frivolous protests — protests which are unlikely to prevail, but nevertheless must be processed by the Commission, sometimes
at considerable cost to the Commission and the applicant. A recent ICC staff task force recommended that, to have
standing, protestants should have participated in the involved traffic during a two year period preceding the application. The Council feels this proposal may fail to effectively reduce the number of frivolous protests and recommends instead that the Commission increase the cost of protesting. Specifically, the Council recommends that the Commission consider requiring unsuccessful protestants to pay the applicant’s legal costs, and also restructuring the fee system so that the fees paid by protestants exceed those paid by applicants.

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