AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m.Under the initial stages of the Clean Trucks Program, some 16,000 drayage trucks built before 1989 will be banned from the Port of Los Angeles beginning Oct. 1, 2008. From there, trucks operating at the port will face increasingly stricter emissions regulations, with a goal to meet 2007 federal emissions standards by Jan. 1, 2012. The plan is expected to reduce harmful diesel emissions by 80 percent within five years. “The people of San Pedro and Wilmington have been subsidizing the port industry for years with their lungs,” said S. David Freeman, president of the Los Angeles Board of Harbor Commissioners. “We absolutely have to get this done to justify the expansion of the port.” The plan now goes to the Los Angeles City Council and Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa for final consideration. EMISSIONS: Long Beach is now expected to approve the same rules for older big rigs. By Art Marroquin Staff Writer A progressive ban on older big rigs entering the Port of Los Angeles was approved Thursday by the harbor commission, a move expected to be duplicated next week in Long Beach. Officials with the Port of Long Beach spent much of the week crafting a last-minute proposal that aligns with the Los Angeles plan. The Long Beach harbor commission is expected to consider the revised measure Monday afternoon. “The port is proposing this tariff to meet the aggressive air quality goals of our Clean Air Action Plan,” said Robert Kanter, managing director of environmental affairs for the Port of Long Beach. Last week, officials at both ports announced a plan that would have required diesel trucks to ultimately follow 2007 emissions standards by Jan. 1, 2014. That deadline would have mirrored a proposal set for consideration next month by the California Air Resources Board, but Port of Los Angeles officials did not believe the plan went far enough. Geraldine Knatz, executive director of the Port of Los Angeles, said the Jan. 1, 2012, deadline matches the goals outlined in the larger Clean Air Action Plan approved by both ports last year. Although Knatz’s last-minute change had initially upset Long Beach port officials, both sides are now working to mend fences, according to executives at both ports. “Given the urgency in reducing air pollution and health risk in communities adjacent to the port, we have put forward more aggressive time frames and requirements for cleaning up the truck fleet,” Knatz said Thursday. “Our plan was always more aggressive than CARB. We need to do this to meet our health standard.” To ensure compliance, all trucks must be registered with the ports by June 30, 2008, and equipped with an electronic identification tag containing vehicle information, including when it was built or retrofitted. Additionally, terminal operators will be required to install equipment capable of reading the electronic tags by Aug. 1, 2008. Trucks not meeting the guidelines will be denied entry into the port. Additional provisions requiring trucking companies to purchase and maintain the cleaner-burning trucks while also hiring drivers as full-time employees are expected to be considered by the Los Angeles and Long Beach harbor commissions by Dec. 14. Other future provisions include a possible cargo fee to pay for the program and a funding plan to defray truck replacement costs. “While I commend the harbor commission for tackling the issue of dirty trucks, I am disappointed that they did not go further and also provide a solution to the unstable trucking workforce,” Los Angeles City Councilwoman Janice Hahn said. “I want to remind the commission that there is a human element to the goods-movement industry and that element is the truck drivers that keep the goods at this port moving,” Hahn said. “Every one of us relies on these drivers to get us the goods that we need every day.” Max Parra, a trucker at the ports for 15 years, said he supported the idea of requiring trucking companies to hire drivers as full-time employees. Otherwise, he said, independent contractors like himself would have to work longer hours to purchase and maintain the cleaner-burning big rigs. “Please make the companies responsible,” Parra said. “They are the ones making money. If you leave it the way it is, you will be creating total chaos.” Last month, federal authorities warned port executives to scrap the driver employee provision, or face legal challenges. U.S. Maritime administrator Sean Connaughton sent a letter to the ports, warning that such a move would disrupt cargo flow through the nation’s busiest seaport. The anticipated employee provisions are also opposed by the trucking and retail industries because it shifts the burden of purchasing and replacing big rigs to motor carriers. “We can’t say if this package is good or bad because it’s an incomplete package,” Julie Sauls, vice president of external affairs for the California Trucking Association, said of the measures approved Thursday. “We would like to sit down and be at the table with you ? before you bring out everything else and discuss the other components,” Sauls said. “I think that we share your concerns that this goes forward in a way that does not halt goods movement, but also works toward cleaning the air.” [email protected] local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!