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Economy

New Ohio Bill Puts $8 Million Into Training Truck Drivers

photo of UBER's OTTO autonomous truck
WIKIMEDIA COMMONS

The trucking industry says there’s been a driver shortage for two decades – and that there could be 175,000 unfilled trucker jobs in the next seven years. Statehouse correspondent Karen Kasler reports a bipartisan group of lawmakers have proposed a package of bills that seeks to put the brakes on that.

One bill would create a $5 million scholarship fund for students to attend trucking schools. Another would streamline the conversion from military to commercial driver’s licenses. A third would change insurance rules to allow more 18- to 24-year-olds to become drivers. And the fourth would start a $3 million tax credit program for job training at trucking companies. Republican Sen. Cliff Hite of Findlay is among the sponsors.

“This is a huge opportunity for the state of Ohio. We have the job openings, 8,000 to 9,000 job openings.”

The Republican and Democratic sponsors say in spite of the advances in self-driving and other delivery technology, there is still a need for drivers to move things to their final destinations.