At Sen. Kelly’s Urging, Biden Administration Takes Steps to Address Workforce Shortages in Trucking Industry

Last month, Kelly pushed the Biden administration to take immediate steps to alleviate supply chain bottlenecks related to trucking 

After successfully pushing the Biden administration to immediately address record-high food prices last week, Arizona Senator Mark Kelly issued this statement after the administration announced it would take additional steps Kelly outlined last month to address workforce shortages in the trucking industry to alleviate supply chain bottlenecks.  

“From the spike in the cost of groceries to the limited options on store shelves, it’s clear that red tape and workforce shortages in the trucking industry are hurting families in Arizona and across the country. It’s why I have pushed the Biden administration to fully and quickly use all of the new authorities provided in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act to alleviate bottlenecks in our supply chain, and I will continue to ensure they use every tool at their disposal to lower costs for Arizona families,” said Senator Kelly.

At Kelly’s request, the Biden administration announced it would take the following steps Kelly previously raised to address supply chain challenges:

  • Launching the Kelly-supported Safe Driver Apprenticeship Pilot – an under-21 pilot program for truck drivers mandated in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. 
  • Improving the CDL licensing process by authorizing over $32 million in funding to states.
  • Addressing the shortage of qualified truck drivers by expanding Registered Apprenticeship programs in partnership with shipping and trucking industry partners.
  • Beginning two Kelly-supported studies to explore the issues of truck driver pay and unpaid detention time which were required by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. 

These Kelly-backed actions come following commitments made by the Department of Transportation and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration in December that they will quickly begin implementing Kelly-backed provisions of the bipartisan infrastructure law which address bottlenecks and inefficiencies affecting the trucking and shipping sectors. These provisions take important steps to address both the short-and long-term causes of the truck driver shortages which are affecting food prices. 

Read Kelly’s full letter outlining these steps HERE.