CARB Economic Hardship Extension: High Bar Set

Pre-conditions disallow certain truck owners from accessing provision

ARB_BigLogoAfter a contentious public hearing in Sacramento, a lawsuit filed by a motor carrier challenging CARB’s environmental analysis in approving amendments to the statewide truck and bus rule, and a series of public comment periods, CARB staff have officially unveiled how truck owners can access the new Economic Hardship Extension.

The Economic Hardship Extension was officially approved by the CARB Board on April 25, 2014 to give truck owners facing the financial inability to comply with the statewide truck and bus rule another couple of years to operate their vehicle(s) – if they complete a rigorous application process.

As detailed in last month’s magazine by’s Sean Edgar, there are many hoops a truck owner is going to need to jump through in order to gain CARB approval. However, in CARB’s September 12 Regulatory Advisory (see: of how truck owners can access this provision are some caveats denying accessibility to many truck owners who may have applied.

Through the regulatory process of approving and implementing this new provision, CARB documents nor staff ever detailed they would specifically deny access to this provision to truck owners currently utilizing a different available extension or unable to prove they operated their truck in California during the first half of 2014. Specifically, the Economic Hardship Extension is unavailable for you if you:

  • Did not own the vehicle(s) on or before January 1, 2012
  • For trucks equipped with a 1995 and older model year engine unless you had previously reported for the Good Faith Effort or fleet Phase-in option
  • Any fleet that actually increase the number of trucks in their fleet
  • Cannot prove the truck was operated in California anytime during 2012 and between January 1, 2014 and July 1, 2014.
  • Utilized existing extension/exemptions (Three-Day Pass, NOx-Exempt area provision, Low-Use Exemption, Low Mileage Work/Construction Truck extension, Agricultural provision, or Log Truck Phase in)
  • If you were approved for some sort of financing after January 1, 2014

The CCTA filed extensive comments during the rulemaking process and CARB never revealed their intention to invoke the above pre-requisites for accessing the new provision. There is a phrase that describes this type of undeclared amendment process to existing regulation – underground regulation.
Ironically, these provisions adopted by CARB make this new Extension available to truck owners who admit they operated illegally in California violating CARB regulation while a truck owner who either parked their truck or avoided operating here because they were complying with CARB’s rules is screwed – imagine that!

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