The American Trucking Associations (ATA) says its lawsuit against the Port of Los Angeles that went to trial the week of April 20 does not threaten the Clean Truck Program at the Port of Los Angeles. Contrary to claims from the Teamsters union and its front group, the Coalition for Clean and Safe Ports, the lawsuit challenges only concession requirements that the Port of Los Angeles has never implemented, including a ban on independent owner-operators, according to the ATA.
The Teamsters want to ban owner-operators to make it possible to unionize all port truck drivers, since owner-operators are independent contractors and cannot join a union. The Teamsters and their political allies among environmental groups continue to spread disinformation about the lawsuit, and in a recent press release, they falsely claimed the lawsuit seeks to end the Clean Truck Program, the ATA contends.
The trucking industry supports the Port of Los Angeles Clean Truck Program and challenges only the requirements of its concession plan that are unrelated to cleaning the air. In 2009, the US Court of Appeals unanimously ruled that ATA’s position is correct, and that most or all of the concession plan requirements are illegal and manifestly unfair to owner-operators. The Court of Appeals rejected the claim from the Port of Los Angeles, the NRDC and several other groups that a ban on owner-operators was needed to help the port achieve its environmental and safety goals.