The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) released a final rule that revises the agency’s regulations governing the lease and interchange of commercial buses, which is estimated to save over $8 million in regulatory costs, without reducing safety.

FMCSA’s final rule includes the following provisions:

  • Revises the definition of lease to exclude carriers with FMCSA-issued operating authority that grant the use of their vehicles to each other.
  • Removes the May 27, 2015, final rule’s marking requirements and reinstates the previous vehicle marking requirements with slight modifications.
  • Revises the provision allowing a delay in the completion of a lease during certain emergencies.
  • Removes the requirement that motor carriers chartered for a trip who lease a CMV from another carrier to provide the transportation must notify the tour operator or group of passengers about the lease and the lessor.

“We listened to bus industry stakeholders and narrowed the leasing regulations to focus on carriers that do not hold operating authority from the agency. This commonsense revision of the rules will reduce regulatory costs and maintain safety,” said FMCSA Administrator Raymond P. Martinez.

There are nearly 8,400 passenger carriers in the U.S. and more than 547,000 passenger-carrying CMV trips occur annually. FMCSA estimates the adoption of this new rule will create $8.3 million in regulatory cost savings for the U.S. economy.

FMCSA has focused on crafting more efficient and effective rules to promote safety and reduce regulatory burdens on the economy. In March 2019, the agency announced a final rule reducing the costs to upgrade from a Class B to Class A Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) — saving driver trainees and motor carriers $18 million annually.

To view the final rule, click here.

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