Open Road Spring 2018

Page 1

Quarter 1, 2018

Introducing, LMTA Executive Director: D. Chance McNeely

How The New Tax Legislation Impacts Your Business Electronic Logging Device Mandate Takes Effect Traffic Changes Coming to I-10 West in Baton Rouge

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CONTENTS Letter From the Executive Director 3 D. Chance McNeely

A New Day for LMTA 4 The New Executive Director Shares His Journey to LMTA by Chance McNeely

ELD Mandate comes into effect 9 Electronic Logging Devices Required Beginning in April 2018 by Ted Griggs

STOPPING TRAFFIC 11 I-10 Rennovations To Alleviate Baton Rouge Highway Traffic by Chance McNeely

Human Trafficking & America 12 How Truckers Can Become Heroes by Topher Balfer

Q&A with Allied Industry 15 Senior Vice President at Regions Bank, Mike Beck by Timothy Boone

TRUMP TAX 17 How the Changes are Predicted to Affect the Trucking Industry by Steve Wheeler

New LMTA Members 2018 19 Calendar of Events 20 Looking ahead to 2018 with LMTA

Advertisers Index 20

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Letter from the Executive Director

VOLUME 10, Issue 1 Open Road is owned by the Louisiana Motor Transport Association and published four times a year. For more information, contact the LMTA at 225-928-5682.

EXECUTIVE editor / EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

D. Chance McNeely chance.mcneely@louisianatrucking.com production editor / administrative services

Dana P. Weidman dana.weidman@louisianatrucking.com MEMBER SERVICES Rachel E. Justus

lmta@louisianatrucking.com

renaissance publishing editor Jessica DeBold

art director Ali Sullivan Chief Executive officer Todd Matherne vP of sales Colleen Monaghan account executive Brennan Manale contributing writers Topher Balfer,

Timothy Boone, Ted Griggs, Doug Williams, Steve Wheeler

Photographer John Ballance LMTA Officers John Austin

Chairman of the Board Bengal Transportation Services Andrew Guinn, Sr. PRESIDENT Port Aggregates, Inc.

David Newman 2nd vice president Newman Transport, LLC

Gary Gobert 1ST VICE PRESIDENT Lake City Trucking

Tim Ordoyne Vice PRESIDENT at Large Kenworth of Louisiana

Judy Smart Treasurer Roadrunner Towing & Recovery, Inc. Kary Bryce Ata vice president Preferred Materials, Inc.

Todd Ruple SECRETARY Preferred Materials, Inc.

Louisiana Motor Transport Association (LMTA) is a Louisiana association of trucking companies, private carrier fleets and businesses which serve or supply the trucking industry. LMTA serves these companies as a government affairs representative before legislative, regulatory and executive branches of government on issues that affect the trucking industry. The association also provides public relations services and serves as a forum for industry meetings and membership relations. For information contact LMTA at: Louisiana Motor Transport Association, Inc. 4838 Bennington Avenue • PO Box 80278 Baton Rouge, LA 70898 • Phone: 225-928-5682 • Fax: 225-928-0500 www.louisianatrucking.com

To advertise call Brennan at (504) 830-7239 or email Brennan @myneworleans.com. Copyright 2018 Open Road, Louisiana Motor Transport Association and Renaissance Publishing LLC. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Louisiana Motor Transport Association, Inc. 4838 Bennington Avenue • PO Box 80278 . No part of this publication may be reproduced without the consent of the owner or Publisher. The opinions expressed in this publication are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the view of the magazine’s managers, owners or publisher. Open Road is not responsible for unsolicited manuscripts, photos and artwork even if accompanied by a self addressed stamped envelope.

Dear readers, This edition of Open Road Magazine is all about the future! As your new executive director, I took some time to introduce myself and lay the groundwork for how I intend to help grow this great association. We also look closely at what to expect regarding ELDs in the short and long-term moving forward and highlight what the Trump Administration’s tax reform package could mean for the trucking industry. Additionally, we highlight longoverdue traffic relief in Baton Rouge that is on the horizon, and talk about how we can lead against human trafficking. Speaking of the near future, here is a brief overview of what to expect over the next few months concerning the state legislature: As with every governor’s tenure, the legislative sessions during the last two years of a term are more difficult than the first two years. Such is life in Louisiana, where a four-year election cycle has both the governor and all state legislators up for re-election at the same time. The legislative sessions of this Governor’s first two years have been no cakewalk, so we should all brace for an eventful 2018 and 2019. In general terms, the primary issue facing the legislature is (and has long been) how to finance the general fund, which is the primary source of revenue for two costly areas of government: education and healthcare. Most other government services are substantially or wholly funded by dedicated taxes or fees, such as the fuel tax to transportation, permitting fees to DEQ, and so on. Income and sales taxes mostly capitalize the general fund, so its revenue will ebb and flow with the economy, while education and healthcare costs tend to increase every year. The decades old debate over how to reduce costs and fund the most expensive areas of government will continue to be there in the future, but some decisions in the legislature could help Louisiana grow its way to fewer budget crises. You can count on LMTA to be there fighting for the trucking industry every step of the way! For the 2018 Regular Legislative Session, taxing is off limits. However, as I write this update, the Governor’s special fiscal session just concluded without any action being taken to solve next year’s projected general fund deficit that is caused, in part, because the temporary one-cent sales tax falls off the books on July 1. It is inevitable at this point that another special session will be called so that the legislature can consider revenue measures prior to July 1. In this year’s regular session, which is underway, expect to see several issues debated that are important to the trucking industry. From special permits to lane restrictions, certain legislators and interest groups will again test the LMTA and the industry we represent. My goal will always be to promote safe and reasonable solutions for the industry. I may be new as your Executive Director, but I am an expert in public policy and government relations. I am up to the challenges that lay ahead, so please rest assured that LMTA will continue to deliver for the trucking industry. New to the legislative session this year will be “LMTA Day at the Capitol” on May 1st. Be on the lookout for more information from LMTA about participating in this event. It will be an excellent educational opportunity for both LMTA members and legislators. I am looking forward to seeing you there! I hope you enjoy this issue of Open Road. D. Chance McNeely

110 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Ste. 123, Metairie, LA 70005 (504) 828-1380 • www.bizneworleans.com

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A New Day for LMTA D. Chance McNeely, New Executive Director, Shares His Journey to LMTA By Chance McNeely

It is not every day that a 30-year-old takes the helm as the leader of a key statewide trade association, much less in an industry so important and so regulated as trucking. My path joined LMTA’s in an interesting way, and I appreciate this opportunity to tell you about it.

BACKGROUND I was raised in a rural part of Northwest Louisiana, DeSoto Parish, though virtually all my extended family has long resided in Rapides Parish. My parents relocated to DeSoto for work in the early 1980s where I grew up hunting and fishing. I’ve always been taught that only hard work will get a person somewhere in life. My parents, two high school graduates, exemplified this philosophy. They’ve always found a way to provide for their three children. It was their hard work and sacrifice that allowed me to move to Baton Rouge for college, and afterwards to Washington, D.C. and begin my career in public policy.

CAREER Two days after graduating from Louisiana State University with a degree in Agricultural Business, I boarded a plane to Washington, D.C. with no idea if or when I would ever return home. I had three bags and an address for my short-term housing arrangements. I would start an internship at the Republican

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National Committee the next day. I had never been to Washington and did not know a single person in the area. Many friends and family thought I was crazy, but I had faith that I would find my way. It was baptism by fire, but after only a few months of knocking on doors of congressional offices and learning how to network, I found my way. It was not easy but I learned that I was capable of so much more than I had ever imagined. My first full time job was at a national trade association as a recruitment specialist in the membership division. My goal, however, was to work in the U.S. Congress. Over the course of the four years I spent in Washington, I served as an advisor to two members of the U.S. House of Representatives, Republicans Kay Granger of Fort Worth, TX and Blaine Luetkemeyer of central Missouri. Each of these Members blessed me with the opportunity to focus on transportation, agriculture, energy, and environmental issues. It was here that I developed my expertise before answering the unexpected call to move back to Louisiana and serve for Governor Jindal. Despite all that I had learned

about myself during the previous four years, it was my time working in state government that truly brought out my ability to produce and deliver. The dynamic in the previous administration was one where, as staff, you were allowed no maximum capacity. It was here that I served as the primary point of contact with several cabinet secretaries and sharpened my expertise in transportation, agriculture, energy, and environmental issues, before being appointed as an Assistant Secretary at the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) where I oversaw over half of the agency’s employees and budget. I served here until the administration ended, after which I was appointed by the new Department of Transportation and Development (DOTD) secretary to serve as his advisor and, more specifically, his workhorse. I was happily thriving in this role until I heard the news that long-time LMTA Executive Director Cathy Gautreaux was leaving the association to serve as an appointee to President Trump. My initial thought was pride for Louisiana and happiness for Cathy, my second thought was what an unexpected and interesting opportunity it could be for me.


NEW EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR The interviewing process with LMTA felt right. It was the vision the Search Committee had for the organization. It was the people in the trucking industry that I would get to represent. The self-made, small businesses that represent the majority of Louisiana’s trucking industry resonate with my family history, my career path and my beliefs. While I don’t have a CDL yet (stay tuned), I do understand the people in the trucking industry. I understand the hard work that is taken for granted by so many, as if the modern economy could exist without the trucking industry (of course it wouldn’t). I am humbled and honored the Search Committee selected and entrusted me to lead LMTA into the future. As we embark on this journey together, I will need your help. First, know that I am committed to serving the membership and that I understand I am only here because of you. With your support, I am going to modernize and grow the LMTA so that we can do more for our members and for the industry. I will need your expertise, your time, and your trust. The first two are yours to give and the last is mine to earn. It starts by being accessible: my email is chance. mcneely@louisianatrucking. com and my cell phone is (318) 518-5367. Don’t be a stranger. I am excited about being your new Executive Director and what we will accomplish together. It has been a wild ride that joined LMTA’s path with mine and I am looking forward to a wild ride together for many years to come. My number one goal is to add value to an LMTA membership. This means demonstrating

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to potential new members, and our current members, that their investment in LMTA will pay back dividends on an annual basis for their company and for the industry as a whole. We can do this by providing effective programs that appeal to the masses for improving safety and compliance. It also means working with allied members to provide discounted services and/or products to our trucking members, and so much more. Here are some initial ideas that I am working toward as your new Executive Director: Website and marketing overhaul. Development of new events • Scholarship fundraising events for the children of member-company employees • Trucking Day at the State Capitol Regional recruitment dinners/events on an annual basis Reinvigorate the Leadership Council • Engage past presidents of LMTA to cultivate upcoming leaders in the Louisiana trucking industry. Develop ongoing positive message, public education. • From local media coverage, to the steps of the state capitol Listening. • I am and will always be taking your feedback on how to improve our organization

FAMILY Aside from the many blessings I have already discussed, the most meaning in my life undoubtedly comes from my wife, Ashlee, and my two daughters, Colette and Celia. Ashlee and I had similar paths,

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having left our rural upbringings to serve in the U.S. Congress. It was at an LSU alumni gameday event where we first met, and over lunches and coffees in the congressional cafeteria where we got to know one another. We brought each other back home to Louisiana and have been blessed with two beautiful little girls. We live in Baton Rouge and enjoy being much closer to friends and family. My family will be joining me at many of our annual events and I look forward to them getting to meet you and yours. B




The Delay Is Over for ELD Mandate Truckers are required to use Electronic Logging Devices Beginning in April

By Ted Griggs

Enforcement began: April 1 Waiver for Leased Trucks: 30-day exemption until April 19 8-day exemption after April 19 Waiver Period Ends: April 19 Full Compliance: April 19 Nearly six years after Congress mandated the use of Electronic Logging Devices for the trucking industry, the long-delayed enforcement of the regulations began on April 1, 2018. The rule went into effect Dec. 18, but regulators did not place vehicles out of service or assess points to carriers. Joseph DeLorenzo, Director of Enforcement and Compliance at the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration said that normal enforcement begins in April. That means if a driver is stopped and he or she doesn’t have an ELD, it will be treated the same way as driving without a paper hoursof-service log would have been in the past. “So it’s a violation for failing to have a record of duty status, and the vehicle would be placed out of service and those points would count against your SMS (Safety Measure System) score,” DeLorenzo said. The ELD mandate was designed to improve driver safety by reducing driver fatigue, which has been linked to truck crashes and driver fatalities. Significant trucking associations, including the American Trucking Associations, and large carriers endorsed the rule, calling it critically important to safety. LMTA members have also supported the regulations. Despite that, the ELD mandate has been the source of controversy. Some smaller carriers and owner-operators protested the regulations, saying the devices were too expensive. Many truckers also complained about the technology’s intrusiveness.

Some worried the ELDs would hamper their ability to make their own decisions when it came to scheduling. In October, truckers protested on both counts to delay the rules. The OwnerOperator Independent Drivers Association unsuccessfully challenged the rules in federal court. Meanwhile, the Truck Renting and Leasing Association convinced federal regulators to allow drivers who lease trucks to use paper logs for up to 30 days. But the waiver period ends on April 19. “The regulations originally allowed an eight-day exemption,” DeLorenzo said. “But TRALA asked regulators for more time while the group did some IT development on ELDs to help with inter-operability.” DeLorenzo said drivers who have to lease a truck for whatever reason, such as a breakdown or additional demand, can operate with a paper log during the exemption period.

But after April 19, drivers will be back to the eight-day exemption, he said. DeLorenzo said there are other exceptions to the ELD mandate, but the first step in the process for carriers is to figure out whether they’re subject to the ELD rule. “The average trucking company that fills out logs is going to be subject to the ELD rule because they’re filling out logs regularly,” he said. The two most common exemptions are for trucks built before 2000 and trucks used only on occasion — for industries where trucking is not their primary business, DeLorenzo said. If the firm doesn’t have to fill out a log more than eight times out of a rolling 30-day period, the company can just stick with paper and not worry about investing time and money in an ELD. To keep up to date with the latest information, visit the websites listed below. B

Read more about ELDs at: www.trucking.org/article/ATA-Reaffirms-Support-for-Maintaining-ELD-Mandate-Deadline www.fmcsa.dot.gov/hours-service/elds/faqs www.trucking.org/article/ATA-Opposes-Efforts-to-Delay-ELD-Deadline www.issuu.com/renaissancepublishing/docs/openroad_q4_2017?e=32344549/57633933 OP E N R OA D Q 1 2 0 1 8

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Stopping Traffic

Plans for I-10 renovations to alleviate highway traffic in Baton Rouge Known nationally for being a major choke point on I-10, Baton Rouge is slated to receive some relief in coming years. Eastbound Interstate 10 goes down to one lane for a brief period in Baton Rouge upon its merger with southbound I-110, but a solution is on the horizon. A project to enhance I-10 from the existing Mississippi River Bridge to the I-10/12 split in Baton Rouge is expected to begin in 2019, and will take a minimum of 5 years to complete. The enhancements include various changes depicted below that are intended to add lane

I-10 Widening One lane will be added in each direction from the bridge to the I-10/I-12 division.

Ramp Removal The existing off-ramps to Washington St. as well as to Dalrymple Dr.

New Service Exits and On-Ramps A longer eastbound off-ramp will now access Washington. St. and go on to service Dalrymple. The new off-ramp will also serve as an eastbound on-ramp for Washington St. Another new exit ramp will connect Dalrymple and Washington, including a U-turn to open traffic access from Dalrymple to access eastbound I-10.

capacity and better control access on the interstate. Limited access reduces merging, allowing traffic to flow more smoothly. Keeping I-10 open and operable during the construction period will be a challenge, and will certainly result in more traffic until the completion of the project. These improvements are long overdue, but it will be a painful multi-year process until the finish line. Be on the lookout for more updates on this project and others so that your businesses can plan accordingly! B

Longer Ramps The existing westbound on-ramp and eastbound off-ramp at Acadian Thruway will be lengthened.

Ramp Removal On- and off-ramps connecting Perkins Road to I-10.

New Express Ramp A ramp from westbound I-10 will open traffic to access College Dr. The new ramp will allow access without needing to cross over I-12 traffic lanes.

I-10 Widening One lane added in each direction on the interstate from the bridge to the I-10/I-12 division.

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Human Trafficking & America How Truckers Can Become Heroes Compiled by Topher Balfer

There is no place in the country where human trafficking is not happening. Elisabeth Barna, Chief Operating Officer and Executive Vice President of Industry Affairs for the American Trucking Associations (ATA), said that truckers are in a unique position to help identity victims and traffickers alike, and that those efforts can help bring an end to this modern form of slavery. “There are over 3.5 million professional truck drivers on our highways and we are truly the eyes and ears of the roads,” Barna said. “If professional drivers are aware of what human trafficking is, are trained, and make that call – they can immediately save lives.” Barna stressed how essential it is for any suspicions to be reported, even if the witness is uncertain of how serious they are.

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“Many truck drivers are on the same routes each day and will recognize a situation that may stand out,” she said. “Other drivers take different routes across the country and see an awful lot. You may not be sure it is a trafficking situation, but no call is a bad call, and you could save a life. The authorities take it from there and investigate the situation.” Organizations like the ATA and Truckers Against Trafficking (TAT) are doing their part to train truckers for the best ways to detect the signs of human trafficking and how to bring that information to the authorities. In January 2018, the bipartisan “No Human Trafficking on Our Roads Act”, sponsored by Rep. John Katko (R-N.Y.) and signed by President Trump, requires the U.S. Department of Transportation to issue bans on professional drivers who

are issued felonies for using commercial motor vehicles for trafficking. The ATA launched its own campaign, Truckers Move America Forward (TMAF), to raise awareness through its online channels by sharing educational materials and human trafficking facts throughout the month of January, which is National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month. UPS drivers, pilots and service providers are even joining the cause; in 2018, UPS airline employees will receive anti-trafficking training for the first time. “The trucking industry lives in every community and delivers to every community,” Barna said. “The industry is not only saving lives by educating on highway safety, but they are now saving lives by focusing on those affected by human trafficking. We are a very patriotic industry and continue to serve America in each and every way possible.” B


Identify victims of human trafficking

What to Look For • Fear and lack of familiarity with or knowledge of their community or whereabouts. • Limited or controlled communication; not allowed to speak for self. • Not wearing shoes. • Radio chatter implying commercial sex or flashing lights signaling location. • Not in control of own identification/ passport. • Acknowledgement of pimp or making a quota. • Branding of trafficker’s name. • Minors being transported in groups.

What to Ask • “Are you traveling alone?” If not, ask who they are traveling with. • “Does your family know where you are?” • “When was the last time you were home or saw family?”

Human trafficking in the United States • Human trafficking happens in all 50 states. • An estimated 24.9 million victims are trapped in modern-day slavery. 71% of trafficking victims worldwide are women and girls. 29% are men and boys. • Victims spend an average of 20 months in forced labor.

• “Do you keep your own money?” If not, ask who does.

• There is no “perfect victim.” Trafficking can happen to virtually any person in any context.

• “Are you physically or sexually abused?”

• The process of coercion, transportation and restraint is usually an organized effort involving more than one trafficker. Most victims are moved constantly.

• “Are you being threatened? What is the nature of the threats?”

What to Do

• According to the 2017 State Department Trafficking in Persons (TIP) report, there were only 14,894 prosecutions and 9,071 convictions for trafficking globally in 2016.

• Collect as many details as you can about the victim, the trafficker and/or the vehicle they are traveling in. Never approach a suspected trafficker on your own. • Alert the manager of the truck stop. • Call 1-888-3737-888, the 24/7 National Human Trafficking Hotline. Calls remain completely anonymous. If you’re not sure, report it anyway.

Sources: Truckersagainsttrafficking.org Humantraffickinghotline.org truckingmovesamerica.com nolatrafficking.org congress.gov


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Q&A with Allied Industry

Mike Beck

Senior Vice President, Regions Insurance

By Timothy Boone

What type of business are you in? How did you get started in this business? How long have you been in this business? I’m in the risk management, commercial casualty insurance provider business. I just always wanted to be in the insurance business, based on family and friends that were in the industry – not in the commercial casualty, but in the personal insurance business. I’ve been in the insurance business for over 33 years. In fact, I’ve been working for the perpetuation of the same company for that long. How long have you been a member of the LMTA? What do you see as the highest value you/your company bring to the LMTA? I went back and looked it up, based on who was president when I joined the LMTA. I’ve been a member for 27 years, as best as I can tell. What Regions brings to the table as an LMTA member is a sophisticated skill set when it comes to risk management. What do you see as the greatest value you/your company receive as an LMTA member? Personally, what I’ve received are just lifelong friendships we’ve created together. It’s been wonderful. The next thing would be the networking opportunities that I’ve had to meet with individuals, to problem solve with them. I’ve been able to provide different insurance risk management products and services to their companies and to their families to deal with different situations that have arisen in their businesses’ lifespan. I’ve insured some people through three different U.S. presidents. It’s been good.

What do you predict for the future of the trucking industry within your type of business? From a pure opportunity standpoint, I think that there are blossoming opportunities when it comes to delivering goods and services to the people of this state. I think it has become more and more challenging to attempt to do that cost-effectively because of the litigious nature of our society. Subsequently, the prices have gone up from a fixed base cost for that trucker and his margins continue to get thinner and thinner. But I just think that it’s a great time to be in the trucking business. With the electronic onboard recorders coming online you’re going to have a lot of the older generation of truckers call it a day and say: “We’re not going to go down that road,” when we’re already down that road. There’s going to be a lot more opportunity for a younger generation of truckers. What accomplishment(s) are you most proud of in your relationship with the LMTA and the trucking industry in Louisiana? I’m proud just being an advocate for the trucking industry. It’s an industry that’s an authentic blue-collar, grassroots organization. I’m proud to support the people that own the companies that have created this industry. Without this industry, you can’t get the goods and have the services we need to succeed. Without the products and services provided by the trucking industry, our nation can’t survive, let alone grow and compete with the rest of the world. B

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Trump Tax

Trucking industry expects boost to bottom line with tax changes, bringing good news to companies and drivers alike By Steve Wheeler

When President Donald Trump signed landmark tax reform legislation just before Christmas, it was welcome news for the nation’s trucking industry. Congress passed a major tax overhaul on December 20, and the president signed it into law two days later. It is the first major tax overhaul in the United States in more than 30 years. Trucking industry officials are still conducting a deep dive into the numbers, but the initial assessment from the American Trucking Association in Washington D.C. is that it looks to be positive news for the majority of the trucking industry. Not only will trucking companies save money directly from reduced tax rates, they’ll benefit from a general lift to the nation’s economy, according to Bob Costello, senior vice president and chief economist of the ATA. “It’s a two-fold story for our industry,” Costello said. “Are trucking companies going to save more money? We think that most of them will.” For trucking companies that are organized as C corporations, the new tax bill will lower their federal income tax rate from as high as 35 percent to 21 percent. C corporations are traditionally-structured companies that are taxed separately from their owners. For S corporations, where income is passed through to the partners of the company, it’s more complicated. These “pass-throughs” are often used in family-owned businesses, LLCs and LLPs. Accountants will calculate 50 percent of W-2 wages, 20 percent of taxable income and 25 percent of W-2 wages plus 2.5 percent of all qualified property, and apply the lowest of those three totals. The tax on C corporations is generally lower, but

when the company issues a dividend the owners pay a separate tax. Distributions in an S corporation are not normally taxable. As a result, some trucking company owners are asking their accountants to investigate the possibility of restructuring in light of the new tax laws, according to Transport Topics magazine. It’s a complicated issue, and each situation is different, so companies are advised to consult their accountants to see which route is better. Meanwhile, Costello said an ATA survey of more than 200 trucking companies shows that three-quarters of those companies expect the new tax structure will boost their bottom line. The survey also showed that 77 percent believe they will see at least some tax savings as the result of the president’s tax reform package. And those trucking executives say they plan to either pay their workers more or invest more capital in their own companies – both of which are good news, Costello said. “Certainly, there are upbeat folks in our industry,” he said. The second benefit to the tax overhaul comes, Costello said, because when the U.S. economy as a whole benefits, the trucking industry should see ancillary growth as a result. The ATA projects a 0.3 percent increase in GDP because of the president’s tax reform package, he said. “If people have more money in their pockets they can spend more money,” he said. Costello said the tax package is expected to benefit companies large and small. “We know that C-corps are really going to benefit.” Trucking is an industry with many small businesses, which are particularly affected by tax rates. According to the ATA, 97 percent of trucking companies in the

United States have 20 or fewer trucks. The same is true in Louisiana. “With the average trucking company in Louisiana only having 10 trucks or less, the tax reform package positions our state’s industry to meet the needs of a growing economy,” said Louisiana Motor Transport Association Executive Director Chance McNeely. “Whether it’s investing in new equipment or hiring new drivers, this reform package helps our industry safely deliver for the people of Louisiana.” Another provision in the tax reform bill that will help small businesses involves the estate tax, also known as the “death tax.” Many family-owned trucking companies will benefit from the new tax law because it dramatically reduces the estate tax. The new law doesn’t do away with the “death tax,” but more companies will become exempt from it. The amount of inheritance exempt was $5.49 million for individuals and $10.98 million for married couples. Those amounts were doubled under the new law. Motor carriers will also have to consider some new rules when purchasing new and used trucks. The “bonus” depreciation expense on trucks has been raised from 50 percent to 100 percent until 2022. Carriers can write off the full value of a truck immediately rather than over a 3-year period. Finally, like the companies they work for, drivers need to look at how the new tax laws impact them. One important change to the law is that drivers will no longer be able to deduct miscellaneous expenses on Schedule A tax forms. Drivers may place a greater emphasis on per-diem to offset that, according to Transport Topics. With the per-diem currently $63 per day, a driver working 300 days would get $18,900 in tax-free per diem pay. B OP E N R OA D Q 1 2 0 1 8

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Q1 NEW LMTA Members Allstate Land & Timber Company, Inc. John Keith Haughton, LA Private Carrier Central Louisiana Technical Community College Tiffany Howard Alexandria, LA Education & Training FMOL Logistics One Terry Werner Baton Rouge, LA Private Carrier G.T. Michelli Company, Inc. Bobby McDill Bossier City, LA Industrial Weighing, Measuring & Calibration Products & Services Rene’s Trucking, Inc. Rene Esneault Paincourtville, LA Common Carrier Southern States Utility Trailer Sales Rhodney Cook Monroe, LA Trailer Sales, Parts & Service Western Concrete Pumping, Inc. Todd Termini Baton Rouge, LA Bulk Carrier

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Louisiana Motor Transport Association, Inc.

2018 Calendar of Events April 21

Seafood Gala Royal Sonesta Hotel | New Orleans Hyatt Centric French Quarter | New Orleans Omni Riverfront | New Orleans The Sugar Mill | New Orleans

August 2-4

Annual Convention Pensacola Beach Hilton | Pensacola Beach, FL

October 9-10

Fall Transportation Conference Hilton Baton Rouge Capitol Center

Advertiser Index American Insurance Brokers, Inc............................................. 18 Breazeale, Sachse & Wilson.................................................... 14 Carrier Transcold South...........................................................2 Cobbs, Allen & Hall.......................inside front cover & back cover Driver’s Legal Plan................................................................. 10 Port of South Louisiana............................................................2 PrePass................................................................................. 10 Roadrunner Towing & Recovery................................................7 Southern Tire Mart...................................................................8 TravelCenters of America....................................................... 14 United Petroleum Transports................................................. 21 United Vision Logistics........................................................... 16 Wells Fargo Equipment Finance.............................................. 19

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