Advocacy is all about being a voice. For the STA that means that we speak on behalf of commercial carriers in the province and across Canada. Advocacy means driving change with all levels of government, it means engaging the public in conversation, it means making sure that the business scape is overall better for carrier in Saskatchewan.
The advocacy activities the Association partakes in vary greatly from month to month and year to year, but the constant is that every action taken, every letter written, every policy debated and agenda pushed, is done for betterment of the industry.
At its roots the STA is a lobby organization; what exactly does that look like? It means that we use the collective voice of all of our members as a tool with policy makers to ensure that all decisions made that affect the industry will do so in a positive way. Nearly 80 years ago a small group of individuals came together in a series of meetings with the provincial government to ensure that decisions were not negatively affecting business owners. 80 years later, the principal is the same but it all happens on a much larger scale.
"The STA puts forth a strong unified voice comprised of a broad spectrum of the different carriers operating in Saskatchewan. This is very important when lobbying government agencies with items of concern regarding possible policy changes. These issues would have become delayed or not heard at all if individual carriers had tried to bring such concerns to government. A unified provincial organization will always demand more influence on government agencies."
Current Advocacy Activity
New West Partnership – The New West Partnership is an accord between the Governments of British Columbia, Alberta and Saskatchewan that creates Canada's largest, barrier-free, interprovincial market. Manitoba is expected to enter the accord in the very near future. The accord directly effects truck transport as it gives the provincial associations a collective voice to improve the industry. The goal of harmonization, to which we are constantly striving, is to have trucks move from the west coast through the prairie provinces with reduced barriers and changes in regulatory restrictions. Keeping the trucks moving is always the goal, reducing red tape of the way to ensure they move with ease. The Saskatchewan Trucking Association works closely with the other provincial trucking associations to ensure that the New West Partnership involved governments adhere to common goals for truck transport.
Wide Base Tires – Pushing the provincial government to allow for single wide base tires to run at weights at par with dual tires on major Saskatchewan corridors. Currently this technology can only be used at 80% of maximum weights. Studies show that the use of single wide base tires can reduce fuel consumption by up to 5%.
National Trucking Week – Engaging media, government, SGI and the public in education and advocacy for the role truck transport plays in our province.
Phase II Green House Gas Emissions – Working with the federal body, the Canadian Trucking Alliance, and our members to ensure that the roll out of the Phase II Greenhouse Gas Emission standards does not result in undue hardship on the trucking industry, such as the Phase I (2010) engines did.
Longer Combination Vehicle Training Program – In conjunction with Alberta, BC and Manitoba the STA is fully redesigning and updating the LCV training program governed by the Memorandum of Understanding signed by the three provinces.
Regina Bypass Project – Actively promoting, communicating with and for, Saskatchewan’s largest Infrastructure project.
Boat Tails – Worked for changes that include increasing the allowable length of aerodynamic devices that can be attached to the back of trucks to improve fuel efficiency.
B-Train Length – As part of the push to harmonize Western provinces in our weights and dimensions, the province will now allow B-train double trailer truck combinations to extend 27.5 metres, up from 26 metres. It has also added 300 kms of highways on which these combinations can gross 63,500 kgs, bringing the province’s full network to 6,400 kms.
ELDs – Proactively engaging the Ministry of Highways and Infrastructure in research on the mandatory implementation of ELDs on a provincial level, following recent developments from the Transport Minister in Ottawa.