The 15 U.S. states that share a border with Mexico or Canada are receiving an injection of federal funding to help keep roads safe by stepping up inspections to ensure foreign commercial carriers are in compliance with U.S. safety laws and regulations.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) said this month it is providing states with international border crossings $32 million in grants. The funds will go to the transportation departments of all the eligible states to help authorities make sure all commercial trucks and drivers are properly licensed to operate on U.S. roads.
The Border Enforcement Grant (BEG) program aims to reduce crashes, fatalities, and injuries by drivers and vehicles involved in international commerce by ensuring that all commercial truck companies, vehicles, and drivers comply with U.S. safety regulations, including financial responsibility and insurance, operating authority, driver qualifications and licensing, and vehicle maintenance.
The U.S. does about $295 billion of truck trade with Canada and $195.6 billion in truck trade with Mexico annually.
Mexican commercial carriers are allowed to operate in the U.S. under a cross-border program as part of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), but only after proving to federal regulators that they can operate in compliance with U.S. transportation safety rules and standards.
Canadian safety laws are similar to those in the U.S., but proof of compliance is still required before commercial vehicles can drive on U.S. roads.
The states receiving grants and the grant amounts are:
|State||FY16 BEG Award|
|Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities||$187,503|
|Arizona Department of Public Safety||$5,610,269|
|California Highway Patrol||$5,291,243|
|Idaho State Police Commercial Vehicle Safety||$97,923|
|Maine Department of Public Safety||$300,000|
|Michigan Department of State Police||$200,000|
|Minnesota State Patrol||$285,000|
|Montana Department of Transportation||$871,410|
|New Hampshire Department of Safety||$33,319|
|New Mexico Department of Public Safety||$491,215|
|New York State Department of Transportation||$643,240|
|North Dakota Highway Patrol||$256,375|
|Texas Department of Public Safety||$17,205,619|
|Vermont Agency of Transportation||$66,058|
|Washington State Patrol||$460,826|