A coalition of labor, environmental and consumer groups have joined together to challenge an Administration pilot program which would grant Mexico-based trucks unprecedented access to U.S. highways. Under existing law, such trucks are only permitted onto a narrow ban of highways in California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas. According to a complaint filed in federal court, the Administration implemented a pilot program which expanded some Mexican-based trucks' access to the highways, despite federal law requiring agencies to first provide information on the proposed program and allow time for comments. Labor, environmental and consumer safety advocates had sought such information on the program, but their requests were denied by the Administration.
Joan Claybrook, president of Public Citizen, argued in a statement that this pilot program both exceeded the Executive branch's authority and did so under a cloud of secrecy. According to Claybrook, “this so-called pilot program was rushed through in secrecy to serve as a showpiece to permit the Bush administration to proclaim victory and declare the entire southern border open to unfettered, long-haul truck commerce before the end of 2008. Congress and the courts should not allow it.”
ACS Board of Directors member Stephen Berzon is counsel of record in this case.