[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 108 (Thursday, June 5, 2014)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 32491-32496]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-13022]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

49 CFR Parts 383 and 390

[Docket No. FMCSA-2013-0457]


Motor Carrier Management Information System (MCMIS) Changes To 
Improve Uniformity in the Treatment of Inspection Violation Data

AGENCY: Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), DOT.

ACTION: Interpretative Rule and Statement of Policy.

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SUMMARY: FMCSA announced proposed changes to its Motor Carrier 
Management Information System (MCMIS) on December 2, 2013. These 
changes will allow the States to reflect the results of adjudicated 
citations related to roadside inspection violation data collected in 
MCMIS. Individuals must submit certified documentation of adjudication 
results through a Request for Data Review (RDR) in FMCSA's DataQs 
system to initiate this process. MCMIS is being modified to accept 
adjudication results showing that a citation was dismissed or resulted 
in a finding of not guilty; resulted in a conviction of a different or 
lesser charge; or, resulted in conviction of the original charge. The 
adjudication results will impact the use of roadside inspection 
violation data in other FMCSA data systems. These changes are intended 
to improve roadside inspection data quality. This document describes 
the MCMIS changes, responds to comments received on the proposed 
changes and provides the schedule for implementation of these changes.

DATES: June 2, 2014.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Ms. Courtney Stevenson, Federal Motor 
Carrier Safety Administration, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, 
DC 20590, telephone 202-366-5241 or by email: 
courtney.stevenson@dot.gov. FMCSA office hours are from 9 a.m. to 5 
p.m., e.t., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. If you have 
questions on viewing or submitting material to the docket, call Docket 
Operations, telephone 202-366-9826.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Public Participation and Request for Comments

    On December 2, 2013 (78 FR 72146), FMCSA encouraged interested 
parties to submit comments and related materials to docket number 
FMCSA-2013-0457.

Viewing Comments and Documents

    To view comments, as well as documents mentioned in this document 
as being available in the docket, go to http://www.regulations.gov and 
insert the docket number, ``FMCSA-2013-0457'' in the ``Keyword'' box 
and click ``Search.'' Next, click ``Open Docket Folder'' button and 
choose the document listed to review. If you do not have access to the 
Internet, you may view the docket by visiting the Docket Management 
Facility in Room W12-140 on the ground floor of the DOT West Building, 
1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590, between 9 a.m. and 5 
p.m. Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

Privacy Act

    All comments the Agency received were posted without change to 
http://www.regulations.gov and include any personal information 
provided. Anyone may search the electronic form of all comments 
received into any of our dockets by the name of the individual 
submitting the comment (or of the person signing the comment, if 
submitted on behalf of an association, business, labor union, etc.). 
You may review DOT's complete Privacy Act Statement in the Federal 
Register published on January 17, 2008 (73 FR 3316), or you may visit 
http://edocket.access.gpo.gov/2008/pdf/E8-785.pdf.

II. Executive Summary

    Complete, timely, accurate, and consistently-reported inspection 
data

[[Page 32492]]

enables FMCSA to achieve its safety mission by identifying and 
addressing trends in regulatory compliance. States adopt and enforce 
Federal standards for motor carrier safety and hazardous materials 
transportation under State law as an eligibility requirement for 
receipt of grant funds under the Motor Carrier Safety Assistance 
Program (MCSAP). MCSAP also requires that States report violations 
discovered through roadside inspections to FMCSA data systems and that 
they participate in FMCSA's national data correction system known as 
DataQs.
    In addition to the inspection data reported to FMCSA, States may 
issue a citation associated with a violation noted in the roadside 
inspection. Such citations may subsequently be adjudicated in a due 
process system. The change reflected in this document and in FMCSA's 
data systems will allow motor carriers or drivers to submit the results 
of an adjudicated citation through the DataQs system. After confirming 
the adequacy of the documentation submitted in an RDR, the State will 
submit the adjudication results into the new field created to record 
this information.
    Adjudication results recorded in MCMIS will potentially impact 
other FMCSA data systems, such as the Agency's Safety Measurement 
System (SMS) and the Pre-employment Screening Program (PSP).
    Based on feedback to the December 2, 2013, notice, the Agency has 
determined that it will not apply this policy retroactively. The policy 
announced in this document applies to inspections occurring on or after 
August 23, 2014. Accordingly DataQs will be modified to accept RDRs 
related to adjudicated citations in August 2014. The August 23, 2014, 
date is based on the time needed for State implementation of compatible 
State information technology (IT) systems able to record and transmit 
the adjudication data.

III. Compliance With the Administrative Procedure Act

    This document announces changes to MCMIS that support a more 
consistent program for handling DataQs seeking recognition of 
adjudicated citations. This document contains a general statement of 
policy and reflects a change in Agency practice and procedures with 
respect to the handling of adjudicated citations through DataQs and in 
Agency information systems. The Administrative Procedure Act (APA), 5 
U.S.C. 552(a)(1)(D), requires agencies to provide public notice of 
statements of general policy by publication in the Federal Register. 
Such ``interpretative rules, general statements of policy or rules of 
agency organization, procedure, or practice'' are not subject to the 
APA's notice and comment requirements (5 U.S.C. 553(b)(A)). This 
document does not amend any Agency regulation nor does it change how 
data correction is sought through DataQs. The IT and program changes 
announced in this document allow FMCSA and the States to receive more 
complete information on the subsequent disposition of citations issued 
during roadside inspections by accepting certified records of 
adjudication results submitted through the DataQs process.
    Presently, MCMIS contains records of inspections, including 
violations observed by law enforcement officers, during such commercial 
motor vehicle (CMV) inspections. See 78 FR 59082, 59083 (September 25, 
2013). Because MCMIS has always been a system that records roadside 
inspection data, MCMIS records presently do not reflect convictions, 
acquittals or other subsequent adjudications or adjustments of charges 
that occur during subsequent due process proceedings. A driver has 
always been able to challenge the correctness of a violation that has 
been cited in a roadside inspection report using the DataQs system, 
whether a citation has been issued for that violation or not.
    As currently required in the MCSAP grant program, pursuant to 49 
CFR 350.201(s), the States must ``establish a program to ensure that 
accurate, complete, and timely motor carrier safety data are collected 
and reported, and ensure the State's participation in a national motor 
carrier safety data correction system prescribed by FMCSA.'' Today's 
announced policy change is thus within the scope of the current MCSAP 
program.

IV. Background

A. Databases for Inspection Data

    State and local law enforcement officials routinely conduct 
roadside inspections documenting violations of laws or regulations that 
are compatible with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations 
(FMCSRs) and Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMRs). See 49 CFR 350.105 
(defining ``compatible or ``compatibility''). These law enforcement 
officials, at their discretion, may issue citations for the violations 
recorded on the roadside inspection report. States are responsible for 
entering roadside inspection and violation data into SafetyNet, a 
database management system that allows entry, access, analysis, and 
reporting of data from driver/vehicle inspections, crashes, 
investigations, assignments, and complaints. SafetyNet provides data to 
MCMIS that interfaces with several databases, including: (1) The Safety 
and Fitness Electronic Records (SAFER) system; (2) PSP; and (3) SMS. 
SafetyNet and MCMIS have always contained records of inspections and 
reportable crashes.

B. Motor Carrier Safety Data Correction System

    As noted, pursuant to 49 CFR 350.201(s), one condition for 
participation in the Motor Carrier Safety Assistance Program (MCSAP) is 
that a State establish a program to ensure that accurate and timely 
motor carrier safety data are collected and reported and that the State 
participates in a national motor carrier safety data correction system 
prescribed by FMCSA. DataQs is that national motor carrier data 
correction system (49 CFR 350.211) (State certification at paragraph 
11). DataQs is an online system that provides an electronic means for 
drivers, motor carriers, and members of the public to submit concerns 
about the accuracy of crash, inspection, and violation data in FMCSA 
data systems. When a request for an RDR is filed, the DataQs system 
automatically forwards the request to the appropriate Federal or State 
office for processing and resolution (https://dataqs.fmcsa.dot.gov/).
    The data system and policy changes announced in this document will 
allow drivers, motor carriers, and members of the public to file an RDR 
in FMCSA's DataQs system and to seek acknowledgement of the 
adjudication in the inspection record. The change in the State data 
systems will parallel corresponding changes to FMCSA data systems. A 
citation that has been resolved through a judicial or administrative 
process, regardless of outcome, is considered to be adjudicated.
    FMCSA believes these changes will (1) provide a uniform and orderly 
process to incorporate recording adjudicated citations through DataQs 
under the State's MCSAP Commercial Vehicle Safety Plans and budgets 
(see 49 CFR 350.213 for description of CVSP); (2) provide an effective 
process to ensure system effectiveness and data quality; and (3) reduce 
the cost of applying and implementing these changes across the Agency 
and the States. FMCSA is requiring that MCSAP grantees follow this 
policy of recording adjudication results as a condition of their grant 
funding under 49 CFR 350.201.

[[Page 32493]]

V. Discussion of Public Comments and FMCSA Responses

A. General Discussion

    FMCSA announced proposed changes to MCMIS on December 2, 2013 (78 
FR 72146). The Agency received 111 unique comments during the 30-day 
comment period. Seventy of the 111 comments supported the proposed 
changes, with commenters stating that this change will help ensure that 
drivers and carriers are treated justly. Steve Davis, a fleet owner for 
FedEx Ground, said, ``I strongly approve of this change to allow 
updated court information to be included in MCMIS. This will improve 
uniformity without question and give a true account of the resolution 
of violation information.'' More than half of the supporting commenters 
(38) did not identify themselves with a specific stakeholder group. The 
remaining commenters in support of the changes were motor carriers (17) 
and representatives of industry associations (9) and the Commercial 
Motor Vehicle Safety Alliance (CVSA).
    The motor carriers that commented included Coach USA, DART Transit 
Company, J.B. Hunt, Sharp Transport, Inc., and Stallion Transportation 
Group. The industry associations that submitted comments included the 
Alliance for Safe, Efficient and Competitive Trucking Transportation 
(ASECTT), American Bus Association (ABA), American Moving and Storage 
Association (AMSA), American Trucking Associations, Inc. (ATA), 
Institute of Makers of Explosives (IME), International Food 
Distributors Association (IFDA), Minnesota Trucking Association/
Minnesota Trucking Associate Safety Council (MTA/MTASC), National 
Association of Small Trucking Companies (NASTC), Owner-Operator 
Independent Drivers Association, Inc. (OOIDA).
    Those commenters generally opposing the changes offered suggestions 
to improve the proposal. These included Advocates for Highway and Auto 
Safety (Advocates), American Association for Justice (AAJ), the 
Kentucky State Police, the Pennsylvania State Police, and the West 
Virginia Public Service Commission. One commenter, Jeff Steeger, who 
did not identify himself with a particular group, objected to the 
policy and stated it would ``allow carriers and their drivers to 
improve their SMS score while demonstrating a continued lack of 
compliance with our safety regulations.''
    The common areas of concern included enforcement impacts; pleas, 
dismissals, and other court actions; retroactive implementation; 
workload and resources; continued uniformity concerns; and questions 
about the impacts on SMS weighting based on violation on the 
conviction.
    Comments to the docket also addressed consistency in the processing 
of RDRs, other quality assurance initiatives, crash weighting and the 
process for requesting appeals. Most of these issues are outside of the 
scope of the December 2, 2013, notice and, therefore, are not addressed 
herein. It should be noted, however, that the Agency is involved in 
separate initiatives addressing many of these issues.
    FMCSA received comments seeking clarification on what is a 
``conviction'' under FMCSA regulations and expressing concerns that 
routinely-assessed fees may inadvertently count as ``convictions.'' In 
Section V.A. of today's document the Agency clarifies how it interprets 
the regulatory definitions in 49 CFR 383.5 and 390.5.

B. Enforcement Impacts

    Both law enforcement and industry commenters expressed concerns 
that changing how data systems address violations in roadside 
inspections based on adjudicated citations would result in law 
enforcement officers issuing fewer citations. The impact of this change 
would be that officers would issue more warnings, which cannot be 
adjudicated by a court. Four commenters affiliated with law enforcement 
agencies indicated that this change would result in an influx of RDRs 
and increased workload. Coach USA urged that, ``FMCSA should not accept 
information regarding violations from state officials unless the state 
issued a citation for the alleged violation at issue.''
    FMCSA acknowledges that law enforcement agencies may alter their 
enforcement practices as a result of today's policy change. However, it 
remains the Agency's position that these process changes will improve 
data quality, accuracy, and uniformity. The Agency's interests are in 
capturing fair and accurate violations in MCMIS. FMCSA has never 
provided direction to law enforcement on when to issue citations and 
defers to those agencies for the best ways to enforce the violations 
they observe.

C. Dismissals, Pleas and Other Court Actions

    The treatment of dismissed citations was the most common topic 
addressed by commenters. Sixteen commenters argued that a dismissed 
citation does not always indicate that the violation did not occur at 
the time of the inspection and, therefore, dismissed citations should 
not be the sole basis for removing violations from inspection reports. 
These commenters expressed the opinion that often citations are 
dismissed based on plea bargaining or technical issues such as the 
carrier's or driver's evidence of corrective action, a lenient judge or 
jury, an absent officer-witness, or a clerical error.
    Several commenters expressed concern that there will be increased 
attempts to plea bargain to a violation with a lower severity weight to 
improve SMS scores. Additionally, commenters expressed concern about 
court clerks causing errors or officers being unable to attend 
hearings, resulting in dismissals. Lt. Colonel Keith Percy of the 
Kentucky State Police, stated that ``Criminal court systems, already 
overburdened with cases considered more serious than traffic 
violations, are under great pressure to deal cases away, and traffic 
cases fall away with little, if any, political consequence.''
    Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety recommended that ``the agency 
should maintain discretion to retain citations, even when dismissed, if 
such dismissals are not on the merits and indicate a pattern and 
practice that would violate the prohibition against masking of traffic 
violations.''
    FMCSA acknowledges that these scenarios may occur. However, there 
are checks and balances in place to prevent improper dismissal of 
commercial driver violations, including 49 CFR 384.226 that prohibits 
States from masking convictions, deferring imposition of judgment, or 
allowing an individual to enter into a diversion program that would 
prevent a commercial learner's permit (CLP) or CDL holder's conviction 
from appearing on the Commercial Driver's License Information System 
(CDLIS) driving record.
    On the issue of burden on the system, it should be noted that, 
notwithstanding the nearly 3.5 million inspections conducted from 
January 1, 2013, through December 31, 2013, there were fewer than 
40,000 RDRs submitted through DataQs for this period.
    Based on an annual estimate of 3.5 million inspections, only 1.1 
percent of inspections resulted in an RDR. The Agency has confidence 
that the courts will strive to objectively evaluate the charged 
violations and that dismissals of citations for administrative or other 
reasons will not have a significant impact on the reliability of safety 
data. Additionally, the Agency will continue to provide outreach to 
courts and prosecutors to explain the serious impacts of cases 
involving CMVs and commercial drivers and to improve their

[[Page 32494]]

knowledge and understanding of CMV violations and their potential 
consequences.
    As part of its data quality program, FMCSA will be monitoring the 
incoming data on adjudicated citations to look for patterns that might 
indicate routine masking of violations by State officials and take 
appropriate action to address these situations.

D. Prospective Implementation

    The December 2, 2013, notice specifically asked for comment on the 
Agency's plan to implement these changes prospectively. Only six 
commenters addressed the issue. Three representatives of industry 
associations recommended that the Agency apply the policy 
retroactively, starting from the implementation of the Compliance, 
Safety, Accountability program in 2010. Two members of the law 
enforcement community supported the prospective-only application of the 
policy. Stephen Keppler of the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance noted 
that applying the policy retroactively would have significant adverse 
impacts, including decreased data uniformity and consistency, and an 
increase in States' workloads that could deplete their resources. Mr. 
Keppler also stated that prospective implementation of this policy 
``allows for improved planning, resource allocation and management for 
both the States and FMCSA.''
    The Kentucky State Police indicated that they would expect the 
number of RDRs submitted to increase significantly, especially due to 
dismissals. The Pennsylvania State Police noted that there would be 
significant workload impact on the minor judiciary. The Agency 
therefore continued to consider workload in deciding not to implement 
this change retroactively.
    FMCSA continues to believe that prospective application will 
mitigate the potential for significantly increased numbers of RDRs, 
based on hundreds--potentially thousands--of past adjudicated 
citations, which could quickly exhaust States' DataQs capability. Such 
a drain on State DataQs staff could prevent States from promptly acting 
on other RDR requests and/or could create a need to redirect scarce 
State resources, adversely affecting motor carrier safety enforcement. 
As previously stated, FMCSA believes that prospective application will 
(1) provide a uniform and orderly process for the States to incorporate 
this policy into their State MCSAP plans and budgets (see 49 CFR 
350.213); (2) provide an effective process that the Agency can test to 
ensure system effectiveness and data quality; and (3) reduce the cost 
of applying and implementing these changes across the Agency and the 
States.
    Based on the comments and the workload and safety impacts noted 
above, the Agency has determined that it will implement the policy and 
changes prospectively. The policy announced in this document applies to 
inspections occurring on or after August 23, 2014. Accordingly, DataQs 
will be modified to accept RDRs related to adjudicated citations in 
August 2014.

E. Uniformity and Masking

    Commenters expressed concern that this proposal effectively moves 
the decision making on roadside inspection data from the State DataQs 
officials to the courts, where the decisions will not be any more 
consistent, based on the courts' and judges' varying knowledge of CMVs, 
CDLs, and motor carrier safety regulations.
    The IFDA expressed concern that, ``. . . this continued broad 
delegation of authority to the states directly contradicts a primary 
rationale for the announced changes which is to ``improve uniformity 
across the states. Given this obvious inconsistency, we question how 
much actual difference the announced changes are likely to make.''
    As previously noted, FMCSA will continue and increase its outreach 
efforts to courts and prosecutors to remind them of the prohibition in 
49 CFR 384.226 on masking convictions, deferring imposition of 
judgment, or allowing an individual to enter into a diversion program 
that would prevent a CLP or CDL holder's conviction for a violation, in 
any type of motor vehicle, of a State or local traffic law (other than 
parking, vehicle weight, or vehicle defect violations) from appearing 
on the CDLIS driving record.

F. Adequate Documentation

    Commenters requested more information on the Agency's definition of 
adequate documentation needed to demonstrate dismissal or other 
adjudication outcome. ATA recommended that the Agency ``clearly define 
`adequate documentation' for the purposes of this notice.'' ATA further 
indicated that ``FMCSA must instruct States which documents are 
acceptable and provide motor carriers and drivers with recourse to 
amend their records should a State refuse to accept proof of 
adjudication.''
    FMCSA will accept scanned copies of certified documentation from 
the appropriate court or administrative tribunal. Examples include but 
are not limited to certified records of the docket entry, the order of 
dismissal, or entry of a ``not guilty'' determination. FMCSA recognizes 
that the varying nature and types of tribunals may result in varying 
types of official documentation that contain the adjudication results, 
and thus the Agency has not specifically limited the type of document 
that must be submitted. The submitter should obtain certified documents 
that are clearly identified and verifiable. These documents must be 
uploaded into the DataQs system for verification by a State official. 
Alternatively, the documentation may include a Web site link to an 
official court Web site with adjudication results.

G. SMS Weighting

    AAJ and ATA questioned which SMS severity weights would be used if 
a conviction was for a different charge than the initial cited 
violation. FMCSA clarifies that where the adjudication results in a 
conviction to a different charge, the severity weight will be reduced 
to a 1 in SMS. The chart in Section V.D. of this document provides more 
detail on the impact of changes in SMS and PSP.

VI. Overview of Changes

A. Terms Used in the Document

    For purposes of this document, the following terms have the meaning 
indicated.
    Adequate Documentation: For the purpose of processing an RDR 
seeking to document the result of an adjudicated citation, FMCSA finds 
that scanned copies of certified documentation from the appropriate 
court or administrative tribunal or providing a direct web link to the 
adjudication results of an official court or agency Web site presents 
adequate and verifiable documentation of the adjudication result.
    Adjudicated Citation: Refers to a citation that has been contested 
and resolved through a due process proceeding in a State, local, or 
administrative tribunal, regardless of how the action is resolved, 
whether by a judge or prosecutor or as part of a plea agreement or 
otherwise.
    Citation: Refers to a notice, issued by a law enforcement officer 
to a CMV driver for a violation of law or an adopted FMCSR or HMR. The 
driver may contest the citation through a State-provided administrative 
or judicial system.
    Conviction: This term is defined in 49 CFR 383.5 and 390.5 as an 
unvacated adjudication of guilt, or a determination that a person has 
violated or failed to comply with the law in a court of

[[Page 32495]]

original jurisdiction or by an authorized administrative tribunal, an 
unvacated forfeiture of bail or collateral deposited to secure the 
person's appearance in court, a plea of guilty or nolo contendere 
accepted by the court, the payment of a fine or court costs, or 
violation of a condition of release without bail, regardless of whether 
or not the penalty is rebated, suspended, or probated.
    Court Costs: FMCSA interprets ``court costs'' as fees imposed by a 
court or administrative tribunal that are intended to cover the State's 
expenses of handling the case. Payment of an incidental expense 
uniformly imposed on all persons that appear before a particular court 
or tribunal regardless of case outcome should not be considered a court 
cost under FMCSA's regulatory definition of ``Conviction.'' Examples of 
excluded, non-punitive court costs include but are not limited to 
scheduling fees, the cost of a certified copy of the court's docket or 
order, or attorney fees.
    Fine: A sum of money imposed as a penalty for an offense. A court 
cost may be considered a fine when the amount charged exceeds the 
amount generally imposed for court costs and is akin to a penalty.
    Unvacated: Refers to an order or judgment that has not been 
canceled or rescinded.

B. New Data Field for Adjudicated Citations Results

    Previously, SafetyNet and MCMIS recorded inspection and violation 
data from the initial inspection report only and did not contain a data 
field that would allow the State to append the result of an adjudicated 
citation to the appropriate violation on the inspection report. With 
these changes, SafetyNet and MCMIS will be modified to provide a field 
that may be populated with the adjudication result of a citation 
associated with the related inspection report. The adjudication result 
will impact the use of the related violations in SMS and PSP, as 
indicated in the chart below in Section V.D.

C. Revised DataQs Guidance to the States

    FMCSA will issue revised direction to the States on receiving, 
reviewing, and documenting adjudication results when an RDR containing 
adequate documentation is submitted. Upon confirming the adequacy and 
accuracy of the documentation, States will enter the adjudication 
result in the field appending the inspection record in SafetyNet. State 
and Federal data systems will be modified to accept data concerning a 
citation associated with a violation that was dismissed or resulted in 
a finding of not guilty or resulted in a conviction of a different or 
lesser charge.

D. Impact of Changes in SMS and PSP

    The following table indicates how the adjudication outcomes 
documented in MCMIS will impact the use of the cited violation in 
FMCSA's SMS and PSP databases:

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 Result of adjudicated citation
   associated with a violation        Violation in SMS                        Violation in PSP
        uploaded to MCMIS
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Dismissed with fine or punitive   Violation not removed..  Violation not removed.
 court costs.
Dismissed without fine or         Remove violation.......  Remove Violation.
 punitive court costs.
Not Guilty......................  Remove violation.......  Remove Violation.
Convicted of a lesser charge....  Append inspection to     Append inspection to indicate violation ``Resulted in
                                   indicate violation       conviction of a different charge.''
                                   ``Resulted in
                                   conviction of a
                                   different charge.''
                                   Change severity weight
                                   to 1.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    As required by FMCSA's MCSAP regulations (49 CFR part 350), States 
must follow the Agency's regulatory definition of ``conviction'' in 49 
CFR 383.5 and 390.5 and address RDRs accordingly. Thus, when an RDR 
indicates that a court dismissed a citation while still imposing a fine 
or punitive court cost, the outcome will be recorded in MCMIS as a 
conviction.

E. Prohibition on Masking Convictions

    FMCSA regulation at 49 CFR 384.226 prohibits States from masking 
convictions, deferring imposition of judgment, or allowing an 
individual to enter into a diversion program that would prevent a CLP 
or CDL holder's conviction for any violation, in any type of motor 
vehicle, of a State or local traffic control law (other than parking, 
vehicle weight, or vehicle defect violations) from appearing on the 
CDLIS driving record, whether the driver was convicted for an offense 
committed in the State where the driver is licensed or another State. 
The Agency views the practice of courts dismissing citations after a 
guilty plea has been entered or following payment of a fine or 
mandatory contribution to a State or local program as a condition of 
dismissal, as ``masking'' of a commercial driver's violation of State 
or local traffic control laws. Masking convictions allows commercial 
drivers to accumulate multiple serious traffic safety violations 
without the driver's State of licensure or other States being aware of 
the driver's actual driving history, and it is for this safety reason 
that such practices are prohibited.
    The changes to State and FMCSA data systems outlined in this 
document will enable both the Agency and the State licensing agencies 
to better track and document patterns and practices that are 
inconsistent with 49 CFR 384.226 concerning the masking prohibition. 
States found to have used masking or other diversionary programs may be 
found in substantial noncompliance and could risk decertification of 
their CDL programs, which could impact grant funding.

VII. Implementation Plan

A. Policy

    FMCSA's State Programs Division will issue direction to the MCSAP 
agencies explaining the expectations and responsibilities related to 
the adjudicated citation process. This policy will apply to inspections 
occurring on or after August 23, 2014, and will be included in the next 
version of the DataQs manual.

B. Training

    FMCSA will conduct training for DataQs analysts through DataQs 
email blasts, training bulletins and webinars. The webinars and other 
training will be provided to DataQs analysts before the policy is 
implemented to improve the consistency of implementation. The Agency 
will also be providing training to its own staff. In addition, 
information will be available on the Agency's Web site and on the 
DataQs Web site.


[[Page 32496]]


    Issued on: May 30, 2014.
Anne S. Ferro,
Administrator.
[FR Doc. 2014-13022 Filed 6-2-14; 11:15 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-EX-P