Parson joins 14 Republican governors in signing onto Operation Open Roads Initiative
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — Gov. Mike Parson on Monday joined 14 other Republican Governors in signing onto the Operation Open Roads initiative.
The governors issued a joint statement committing to use their respective state authority to implement solutions that support supply chain efficiency, cut regulatory red tape, and increase market access, in response to supply chain shortages being experienced across the country.
In the joint statement, the governors also called on the Biden Administration to suspend outdated regulations that are burdening commercial drivers, transportation and logistics stakeholders, and American manufacturing. The governors detailed specific ways in which the Biden Administration can assist these efforts:
• Lowering commercial drivers license (CDL) age requirements from 21 years old to 18 years old;
• Suspending federal policies that deter American manufacturing;
• Ending COVID-19 vaccine mandates on private businesses, particularly on the trucking and transportation industry; and
• Ceasing inflation inducing federal spending.
"Missourians, like many Americans, are deeply concerned about their rising grocery and energy bills, increasing delays for goods and services, and soaring inflation threatening their paychecks," Parson said. "The Biden Administration's continued attempts to tax, spend, and regulate its way out of this crisis have failed. We are committed to doing what we can at the state level to fix this crisis and to get us back on track, but we need the federal government to get on board or get out of the way."
To strengthen and support Missouri supply chains, Parson on Monday signed Executive Order 21-13 establishing the Missouri Supply Chain Task Force. The Task Force is charged with convening public and private stakeholders across the state to identify potential improvements and solutions to supply chain issues occurring in Missouri.
The Task Force is also charged with engaging surrounding states in its work in order to maximize interstate coordination.
The Task Force will be co-chaired by the Director of the Missouri Department of Transportation and the Director of the Office of Workforce Development. Any recommendations that require legislative changes are to be expedited by the group ahead of its dissolution on June 30, 2022.
"This is a national crisis that requires coordination across all levels of government and between public and private partners. By signing this Order and supporting this initiative, we are acknowledging the threat and working to mitigate the negative impacts on Missourians," Parson said. "Missouri agencies and stakeholders have already begun identifying ways to improve and strengthen our transportation infrastructure and workforce, and this Task Force will complement and further that work, while prioritizing prompt and meaningful solutions."