S. 1393 would exempt active-duty members or reservists of the armed forces from certain tests required to obtain a state commercial driver’s license (CDL) if they have qualifying military experience. The bill also would expand the types of medical professionals at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) who could certify that veterans meet the physical standards required to operate commercial motor vehicles.
Under current law, veterans are exempt from requirements to take certain tests for CDLs if they have qualifying military experience. Furthermore, until October 27, 2018, all states are permitted to waive testing requirements, if they choose, for qualified veterans, reservists, National Guard, and active-duty personnel. Under regulations proposed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), states could continue to waive CDL testing requirements for current and former members of the military who have qualifying military experience. Therefore, CBO expects that implementing provisions related to testing requirements would not have a significant cost.
CBO also expects that expanding the number of staff at VA who could issue the medical certificates would not lead to significant additional costs related to exams. (Currently at VA facilities, only physicians may perform the physical examinations and issue the medical certificates required for CDLs. According to the Department of Transportation, physicians at VA have provided roughly 13,000 medical exams related to CDLs over the past two years.)
Enacting S. 1393 would not affect direct spending or revenues; therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures do not apply. CBO estimates that enacting S. 1393 would not increase net direct spending or on-budget deficits in any of the four consecutive 10-year periods beginning in 2028.
S. 1393 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act and would impose no costs on state, local, or tribal governments.
CBO transmitted an estimate for H.R. 2258, the ADVANCE Act on June 14, 2017, and one estimate for H.R. 2547, the Veterans Expanded Trucking Opportunities Act of 2017 on June 21, 2017. Both bills were ordered reported by the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure Committee on May 24, 2017. Those bills have provisions similar to S. 1393 and CBO’s estimates of the cost to implement them are the same.