Congressman Larry Bucshon (IN-08), along with Congressmen Mike Quigley (IL-05) and John Carney (DE), introduced the Military CDL Act of 2012. The legislation is a companion to legislation introduced into the U.S. Senate by Senators Patty Murray (WA) and Olympia Snowe (ME).
Congressman Bucshon (IN-08) states:
"With so many of our men and women in the armed forces receiving CDL training, it makes sense to allow them to pursue the proper license. Not only will it help our military forces have more CDL licensed drivers, but it will also help our veterans find work after their military service. Currently, many veterans are unable to use the skills they learned in the military and apply them to the civilian workforce. I am pleased to have been able to work with my colleagues in the House and with the U.S. Senate on this commonsense, bipartisan bill that will help our military service men and women."
Senator Snowe (ME) states:
"As America's veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan face an unemployment rate of 10.9 percent, it is critical that we in Congress honor our sacred commitment to these brave men and women by helping make their transition to civilian life easier -- and that starts with finding a job. It is unacceptable that so many veterans, especially those recently returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, have found themselves unable to successfully enter civilian professions for which they have already received world-class training. It is vital they receive our help to overcome the unique challenges and red tape preventing them from using their skills to contribute in the private sector, and this bill continues the efforts I began with Senator Klobuchar as part of the highway bill earlier this year to streamline the process of obtaining CDLs for our nation's heroes."
Congressman Quigley (IL-05) states:
"Our service members give everything to keep America safe, including frequent deployments and station assignments all over the country and far away from their permanent homes. By removing the unnecessary barriers that prevent these hardworking men and women from obtaining a commercial driver's license, this legislation allows America to give something back by providing them with a valuable skill to advance their civilian employment opportunities when their military service ends."
Congressman Carney (DE) states:
"The men and women who serve in our armed forces develop skills and knowledge that make them very valuable employees. The Military CDL Act makes it easier for these veterans to put their training to use immediately upon leaving the service. This bill strengthens the economy by helping more trained, quality employees enter the workforce, and gives veterans a firm foundation to begin the next phase of their careers."
This legislation will allow active duty military, military reserves, National Guard, active duty United States Coast Guard, or CoastGuard Auxiliary to obtain Commercial Drivers Licenses (CDL) in states in which they are not permanent residents, but are either temporarily or permanently stationed. Currently, members of the military receive CDL training, but are unable to obtain a license if they are not residents of the state; this legislation removes that barrier. In addition, their CDL license will carry into a post-military life, providing veterans with another certification to seek post-military employment.
The legislation is endorsed by the American Trucking Association and Owner Operated and Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA).
Congressman Bucshon is the only Hoosier in the U.S. House of Representatives to serve on the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee.