FMCSA proposes 25% hike for UCR fees | Two new Mack/Volvo recalls

Trucking news and briefs for Monday, Jan. 8, 2024:

UCR fees -- 25% bump proposed for 2025

Proposed increase to 2025 UCR Plan feesFMCSA's proposed 25% increase to UCR Plan fees for 2025 are to make up for a shortfall in revenues after two consecutive years of decreased fees.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration is proposing to increase registration fees that participating states collect from motor carriers, brokers, freight forwarders and leasing companies for the Unified Carrier Registration (UCR) Plan and Agreement for the 2025 registration year and subsequent years. For one-truck owner-operators with authority, it could mean an additional $9 spent annually. 

The fees for the 2025 registration year would be increased above the fees for the 2024 registration year by an average of 25% overall, with varying increases between $9 and $9,000 per entity, depending on the applicable fee bracket. The proposal is based upon a recommendation from the UCR Plan. The plan's board provides fee adjustment recommendations to the Secretary of Transportation when revenue collections result in a shortfall or surplus from the amount authorized by statute. Fee adjustments are required by federal statute.

The proposed increase for 2025 follows UCR decreases for the last two registration years. The fees for the 2023 registration year were decreased by almost a third from 2022 fees, and fees for the 2024 registration year were decreased by nearly 10% from 2023.

Both fee adjustment recommendations submitted by the UCR Plan, and particularly the 2023 recommendation (for 2024 registration year fees), anticipated a need to increase fees in or around the 2025 fee registration year because the funds from excess collections that required the two years of fee reductions would be largely exhausted.

FMCSA noted that proposed fees for 2025 would remain lower than fees in effect in registration years 2019-'22.

Public comment on the proposed increase can be made for 30 days beginning Tuesday, Jan. 9 at www.regulations.gov by searching Docket No. FMCSA-2023-0268.

[Related: Get your own authority: How to tackle the basics of filing, insurance and more]

Improperly assembled steering gears prompt Mack, Volvo recalls

Mack Trucks is recalling approximately 284 trucks in which the steering gear assemblies may have been incorrectly assembled, according to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration documents. Volvo is also recalling a single truck for the same issue.

Mack’s recall includes model year 2024 Anthem, Pinnacle and TerraPro trucks in which the steering gear assemblies may have been assembled with fewer recirculating balls than are required, which may result in a loss of steering control. The single Volvo truck recalled is a 2020 VNL.

Dealers will inspect and replace the defective gears as necessary, free of charge. Owner notification letters are expected to be mailed Feb. 23. Owners can contact Mack customer service at 800-866-1177 with recall number SC0457. NHTSA’s recall number is 23V-899. Volvo Trucks customer service: 800-528-6586 with recall number RVXX2316. NHTSA’s recall number is 23V-900.

The two manufacturers also are recalling a handful of trucks for an issue related to the axle spindles, according to NHTSA documents.

Mack’s recall affects five model year 2024 Granite units, Volvo’s just one model year ’24 VNL. In the affected units, the bearing journals may not be fully seated in the steering knuckle assembly, preventing the proper installation of the wheel end hub assembly.

An improperly installed wheel end hub assembly can leak oil, causing the axle spindles to loosen or fracture and increasing the risk of a crash, the recalls said.

Dealers will inspect and replace the steering knuckle assembly as necessary, free of charge. Owner notification letters are expected to be mailed Feb. 8. Using the Volvo/Mack customer service numbers above, owners can reference recall number RVXX2315 for the Volvo. NHTSA’s recall number is 23V-886.

Reference recall number SC0456 for the Macks. NHTSA’s recall number is 23V-887.

[Related: The five most-common reasons wheel seals fail]

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