STA looks back on 2017

The Saskatchewan Trucking Association has created a document entitled The Retrospective, which reflects on the events of 2017, recapping successes and events throughout the year. The publication can be found online at www.sasktrucking.com under the About Us section.


Saskatchewan Party under new leadership
The Saskatchewan Party, Saskatchewan’s governing party, elected a new leader, Scott Moe, in January. “The STA has always had a productive working relationship with the Saskatchewan Party. The pro-economic approach of the party and its willingness to work with industries to meet economic goals is very important to us as an advocacy organization. The STA looks forward to continuing that relationship with Moe as the party leader,” said STA Executive Director Susan Ewart.

In a pre-election meeting with Mr. Moe and his team, the STA discussed the opportunities the trucking industry has to decrease its environmental impact via red tape reduction and allowance of new, innovative technologies. Mr. Moe was receptive to these ideas and confirmed his desire to work closely with industry to find solutions.

It is Scott Moe’s stance on a federally mandated carbon tax and focus on exports that stand out in the mind of the association as being key issues during meetings between the two groups. Increased exports are made possible by the trucking industry, something the STA feels Moe understands to the fullest extent. This includes the infrastructure requirements required to make Saskatchewan a more trucking friendly province, such as rest areas. The STA is looking forward to working with the new Premier and the new Saskatchewan Cabinet Ministers in its continued advocacy work on behalf of truck transport in the province.

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STA to offer online training
The STA now has online training! Online training will be available to both Carrier and Affiliate Member employees, covering a wide range of topics. Saskatchewan is a vast province with many trucking companies operating outside of major centres, limiting access to training and increasing the cost of ongoing education for all employees. With small companies making up the majority of the trucking association’s membership, the STA believes the key to closing the gap in training availability is online education. For prices, updates on training offerings and to register for online training, visit www.sasktrucking.com.

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Announcing: STA Networking Breakfasts
Prior to 2017, the STA membership was seeking more opportunities to connect with industry associates, other members and the STA board in face-to-face settings. With a geographically disbursed membership, the STA was seeking opportunities to bring interested parties together and in 2017 started hosting Networking Breakfasts. Held in both Regina and Saskatoon to help connect as many members as possible, the breakfasts present a great opportunity to bring the STA membership together. Events were held on March 8 in Regina and March 22 in Saskatoon.

Make sure you do not miss out of future STA events by checking the STA Events line-up online at www.sasktrucking.com.

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Representing the industry In Saskatchewan
As industry participants, we all know that staffing your operation can be a great challenge. Not only is there a nation-wide truck driver shortage, but also experienced drivers can be very difficult to come by. As part of an on-going effort to promote truck transport as a viable career option to younger generations, the STA will be representing its membership at the Stepping Stones Career Fair at the International Trade Centre in Regina on April 25. The career fair features organizations who are committed to hiring First Nation, Metis and Inuit people is open to all and encourages participation from secondary and post secondary students.

The STA will represent truck transport as a prosperous industry for both students and those looking for a new career and will be spreading the message that there are jobs beyond being a driver. Dispatch, management and technicians are also needed by industry, great local jobs about which the general public needs to be further educated.

Promoting the industry to the public is a role the STA takes very seriously.

Education on available opportunities, sharing the road with commercial vehicles, and the key role truck transport plays in the lives of Canadians are just a few of the key areas on which the STA focuses. Member companies are invited to share printed and promotional material with the STA for the upcoming show. To have your company information showcased at the event, please contact Russ Turgeon at 306-569-9696

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STA supports ELD announcement
On Dec. 18, federal Transport Minister Marc Garneau announced the introduction of a Gazette I process for mandatory use of electronic logging devices; a decision supported by the STA. The proposed regulation will bring the Canadian trucking industry in line with enacted regulations in the US that make it the law that carriers and drivers use an electronic version of paper logbooks, which are a dated and easily manipulated method of tracking a driver’s hours of service.

“This is about creating a level playing field for all companies in North America. Hours of Service regulations govern the safe operation of a vehicle and safety is the #1 priority of the trucking industry. Companies who chose to use risky taking behavior to get ahead are creating an uneven playing field for the companies who spend large sums of money to be safe and compliant. This is the first step in addressing an antiquated system that can be easily violated,” said Susan Ewart, STA Executive Director.

The Canadian Trucking Alliance has been advocating for the mandated use of the technology for years. “ELDs are going to ensure optimum compliance with hours of service regulation, which is going to reduce commercial vehicle collisions related to fatigue and cognitive driver distraction,” stated Stephen Laskowski, CTA President.

The regulation will apply to companies who are regulated federally, approximately 170,000 units. It won’t affect companies that operate under the Saskatchewan Hours of Service Legislation, although the STA Board of Directors has asked the Province to take a supportive stance on mandating ELDs.

“In early 2017, the STA Board of Directors voted to support the implementation of mandatory ELD use for provincially regulated carriers. It’s unjust to the industry as a whole that national and international carriers are subject to vastly different regulations. Provincial carriers in Saskatchewan already have a competitive advantage through a different Hours of Service regulation, not implementing the ELD mandate in Saskatchewan will only broaden that gap,” says Ewart.

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Change to GTH Board
The Global Transportation Hub has seen a change to its Board of Directors as Dr. Sandip Lalli has replaced Captain Gordon Houston, who is retiring.

Dr. Lalli has spent much of her career exploring innovative paths to international trade. Now she is helping the GTH consider new opportunities for development, specifically in value-added agriculture.
“The GTH can be a connecting organization,” says Lalli, who joined the GTH Board of Directors in December 2016. “We can figure out ‘here are the commodities and here is the potential.’ We have the land, the logistics hub, some co-location possibilities, the railway, good access to labour and a stable government. This is where we can bring together partners who can create a win.

“Supply-chain security and transparency around farming practices are tremendously important,” adds Lalli. “Once something is produced, is it secure? Can I have traceability on the product? Can I have enough inputs to sustain the supply chain? The GTH can provide a dedicated location with rail access right there and the ability to get to port.”

The GTH recognizes and thanks Captain Gordon Houston for his many years of service on the GTH board of directors. One of the founding members of the original board, Captain Houston elected to retire with the end of this fiscal year. He was instrumental in merging the Vancouver ports, and ended his career as the President and CEO of Port Metro Vancouver, the largest and busiest sea port in Canada.

“Gordon’s 40 years of experience in shipping and international trade will be much missed,” said GTH board chair Doug Moen, “but equally missed will be his professionalism on the board, and his advocacy on behalf of the GTH. I know he has taken a great deal of pride watching the hub grow from canola fields, to a thriving facility with multiple clients. We wish Gordon all the very best with this next chapter in his life.”

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