This morning, Governor Gavin Newsom issued Executive Order N-19-21, which aims to alleviate congestion at California’s shipping ports and tackle the state’s truck driver shortage.
The Order directs state agencies to:
- Find state, federal and private land for short-term container storage.
- Identify priority freight routes to be considered for a temporary exemption to current gross vehicle limits to allow for trucks to carry additional goods.
- Create workforce training and education programs. This includes expediting AB 639’s (Cervantes, 2020) implementation.
Specifically, Governor Newsom’s Order states:
- “The Department of Transportation, in partnership with the California State Transportation Agency, within 30 days of this Order, shall, in collaboration with industry stakeholders, evaluate and identify priority freight routes to be considered for a temporary exemption to current gross vehicle weight limits.
- The Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development shall identify non-state sites, including private, locally owned, and federally owned parcels, that could be available to address short-term storage needs to address the supply and distribution chain crisis.
- The Department of General Services shall complete its review of state-owned property in proximity to impacted ports that may be made available to address short-term storage needs to address the supply and distribution chain crisis by no later than December 15, 2021. To meet this deadline, all agencies under my direct executive authority shall support this effort by timely responding to all inquiries made by the Department of General Services.
- The Department of General Services shall collaborate with other state agencies to expedite leasing for the purpose of storing cargo containers on state-owned parcels identified pursuant to the Department of General Services’ review.
- The California Labor and Workforce Development Agency shall use existing resources to identify potential high road training partnerships to increase education, career technical education, job training, and workforce development opportunities for port workers and other workers across the supply chain. In identifying such opportunities, the California Labor and Workforce Development Agency shall first consider whether such partnerships can be funded through existing sources, such as the federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act.
- By December 31, 2021, the California Labor and Workforce Development Agency shall take all necessary actions to constitute and announce the membership of the industry panel required by AB 639 and codified at Government Code section 12893.1 (a). The Secretary of Labor shall convene the panel for its first meeting by March 1, 2022.
- The Department of Finance shall work with state agencies and departments to develop longer term proposals that support port operations and goods movement for consideration in the January 10 Governor’s Budget. Proposals may include port and transportation infrastructure improvements, electrification of the goods movement system from port to delivery, workforce development, and other actions to support goods movement.
- The Department of General Services, California Department of Food and Agriculture, the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development, California State Transportation Agency, Department of Transportation, and the California Labor and Workforce Development Agency shall use all existing legal and financial authority to expedite and prioritize these activities, including by giving them preference in the award of state funding, pursuant to my further direction. Agencies not under my direct executive authority are requested to do the same.
- The California State Transportation Agency, the California Department of Food and Agriculture, the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development, and the California Labor and Workforce Development Agency shall continue to execute actions in coordination with the Biden-Harris Administration Supply Chain Disruptions Task Force.”