ACI's legislative team scored a major victory in its work with the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) and the Indiana State Department of Agriculture (ISDA). Over the last several years, weather challenges have made it difficult for ACI members to secure temporary Commercial Driver's Licenses (CDLs) during the pre-set time periods. Each year, ACI would have to work with our partners in state government to request an extension due to planting season delays.
Last week, the BMV and ISDA announced new seasonal options available for the Restricted Class B Commercial Driver's License, which will provide greater flexibility for ag retailers and producers. The new policy will take effect on February 1, 2017.
"During the planting and harvest seasons, those in agriculture have enough to worry about without making it tougher for them to get the proper CDL," said BMV Commissioner Kent Abernathy. "This new policy gives them more flexibility."
Prior to this policy change, those in agricultural transport were only able to haul seasonal loads during predesignated periods of time. During planting season in particular, this put some producers and agricultural retailers at a disadvantage who, regardless of climate or their specific operations, were unable to haul loads before April 2.
Under this new policy, drivers will be able to custom tailor their Restricted Class B CDL license to their own needs and will no longer be restricted to predesignated periods of time.
"Many unknown variables affect planting and harvest seasons, and producers and agribusinesses know best what works for them," said Ted McKinney, ISDA Director. "By providing greater flexibility, this is a major victory for Indiana's agricultural community. I commend BMV on their work and for being such a great partner on this issue."
The Restricted Class B CDL still has to be renewed every four years, and the seasonal periods can be changed at time of renewal. Such a license allows operation of Class B and Class C vehicles only. Holders may not carry hazardous material loads that require a placard except for;
- Diesel fuel in quantities of 1,000 gallons or less
- Liquid fertilizers in vehicles or implements of animal husbandry with total capacities of 3,000 gallons or less
- Solid fertilizers that are not transported with any organic substance
Please contact ACI Legislative Director Mark Shublak with any questions (firstname.lastname@example.org) or click
to read more from the BMV website about CDL requirements.