Oklahoma Trucking Assoc. joins California’s AB5 fight

Updated Aug 15, 2020

A major state trucking association has weighed in to support the fight against legislation aimed at undercutting the owner-operator business model.

The Oklahoma Trucking Association Thursday, Aug. 13, announced it has contributed $5,000 to the California Trucking Association to support that association’s ongoing efforts against anti-contractor legislation in the state. The CTA is challenging Assembly Bill 5 (AB5), a law enacted in California in 2019 that legislates if a worker is an employee or an independent contractor.

Screen Shot 2020 08 13 At 9 05 59 Pm“While presently a California issue, AB5 is really an industry issue,” said Jim Newport, president and CEO, Oklahoma Trucking Association. “Similar legislation has been attempted in some states and is likely in others. By making this contribution to the CTA’s efforts to defeat AB5, the Oklahoma Trucking Association is demonstrating that it understands the potentially widespread impact of the law, is being proactive in addressing the issue, and is willing to partner with others for the good of the industry.”

California’s AB5 legislation is opposed by the trucking industry because it likely forces companies hiring owner-operators to classify the independent contractors as employees. AB5 was signed into law last fall and on Dec. 31, one day before it was scheduled to go into effect, CTA won a preliminary injunction to prevent its enforcement against motor carriers. The injunction has been appealed by the State of California to the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, which will hear CTA’s lawsuit challenging the law Sept. 1.

“The Oklahoma Trucking Association’s carrier and allied members take pride in being part of an industry that represents one of every 15 jobs in the state,” said Jo-Don Clanton of Pioneer Transport and chairman of the Oklahoma Trucking Association. “Issues such as California’s anti-contractor legislation threaten the over 75 percent of Oklahoma’s communities that depend exclusively on trucks to move their goods. The Oklahoma Trucking Association is proud to look beyond its own state borders to support CTA and the entire trucking industry.”

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The Oklahoma Trucking Association and is affiliated with the American Trucking Associations and is a key member of ATA’s 50-state federation.