The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) will allocate around $48 million in grant funding. The aim is to enhance the commercial driver’s license (CDL) driver training opportunities and refine the process of obtaining a CDL. This initiative underlies the Biden-Harris Administration’s ongoing commitment to the Trucking Action Plan, aiming to bolster the national supply chain and trucking workforce.
More than $44 million will be given to states and various entities to manage national CDL programs via the Commercial Driver’s License Program Implementation (CDLPI) grant. The grant will assist states in accelerating CDL issuance and renewals and facilitate the electronic exchange of conviction and disqualification data.
This effort also extends to regulatory safety requirements and development of human trafficking outreach and education materials for CDL drivers. The funded projects range from hiring state personnel for reducing CDL skills testing delays to improving CDL reporting and record accuracy.
In addition, another $3 million from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, will be awarded through the Commercial Motor Vehicle Operator Safety Training grant (CMVOST) to expand recipients’ capacity to train veterans, their families, individuals from underserved and refugee communities, and other Americans to operate commercial motor vehicles (CMVs) safely. This grant prioritizes training programs for current and former U.S. Armed Forces members, including the National Guard, Reservists, and their families to pursue a CDL and a career in truck and bus driving.
The impact of the FMCSA grant will likely be multifold, directly affecting the commercial driving sector and the broader national supply chain. This could expedite the entry of new drivers into the workforce, addressing the current shortage of commercial drivers, and improving the efficiency of the supply chain.
Furthermore, the investment towards operator safety training grants that targets veterans, their families, and individuals from underserved communities, promotes inclusivity and diversity within the trucking workforce. By prioritizing training for former U.S. Armed Forces members and their families, the initiative also provides a viable career path for those transitioning from military service. This investment is likely to foster a larger, more diverse, and well-trained workforce, contributing to safer roads and a more resilient supply chain.