OK! I have too much to say about how much I hate the Oregon department of transportation. Any truck drivers, owner operators or trucking companies will know EXACTLY what I'm talking about. PLEASE please please read this and be aware of it. And if you're in the trucking business, you need to know how they rip you off because most people don't realize it and its people like that, that the DOT takes advantage of. Read the whole thing, it will be worth it.
1: Oregon charges WAY too much for mileage. I have 17 trucks (all owner operators). Every month I send Oregon a check for about $2700.00 just because my trucks drive through there. As of the other 47 connected states, I pay about $1500 every THREE months for 47 states (IFTA International Fuel Tax Agreement which is files quarterly). So pretty much what I pay just for one state Oregon in one month, I pay the same amount for 47 states for half a year. Sad, I know.
2. If paying for every mile you drive through isn't enough, we also pay a heavy duty fuel tax (road tax for driving) every year ($550.00 per truck).
3. Obviously the heavy duty fuel tax and mileage tax isn't enough, every trucker pays from $1700 - $2500 in prorates every year. Ill explain what prorates are. The DOT charges a certain amount for every state you travel through throughout the year. You report how many miles you went in each state and then they determine and amount of how much you pay depending on which states you travel most through or which ones you travel less thru. The more you travel in one state the more money they charge you, and if you travel less in a certain state they charge you less. So that's more funding for the Oregon dot on top of everything else.
4. IFTA. Let me explain how this works. If you drive through a state, for example Wyoming, they charge .14 cents a mile you go through. But if you fuel up in Wyoming, they credit you so you don't pay almost anything. So the more you fuel up in the state you ravel in the less you pay per mile you drive. If you're a really smart owner operator/driver, sometimes you even get money back from that state. This is how 47 state and all of Canada and Mexico do it. Oregon on the other hand, charges you for no matter what. So if you fuel up in Oregon and then drive into Washington, your going to pay ALOT of money to Washington for not fueling up there, and on top of that your still going to pay Oregon.
In all the other states, let's say I fuel up in Washington and drive 300 miles, then I drive through Idaho and don't fuel up, the amount of money Washington gives me back cancels the amount Idaho will charge me for driving through the state. This is how every state/providence in North America works, except Oregon. The reason lots of people pay a lot for the IFTA is because Oregon makes its gas a couple cents cheaper so truckers will fuel up there instead of Washington/California, Idaho etc... So when you drive though another other state surrounding Oregon, you pay them a lot more than you should. Oregon does this on purpose so you will fuel up in their state. Most truck drives don't realize how the IFTA works so they get charged too much, for nothing. I don't blame them either; I own a trucking company and it took me 1.5 years to figure out exactly how the system goes.
5. BOND. This is how trucking works. You apply for a company and get a DOT number and an MC number. The only way you can open the company is if you have insurance and your insurance company. Oregon makes you file and pay a bond just so you can drive through the state. When I started my company I had 16 Trucks and mile Bond amount was $4750. I thought it was completely ridiculous but what can you do. About two months after I added another truck. Half a year later, I get a letter from ORDOT saying my bond is raised to $9250.00 because I have and "increased rider". IF you don't do as they say, they suspend you.
6. Suspension. If you make a late payment, it's a 10% fee. If you don't pay as they say, they suspend your account so no one can drive through Oregon. I file my reports online. I usually file it on the 29, 30, or 31st of the month. I started reporting one of my monthly mileage reports on the 30th and its said please try again later we are having problems with the site and it will be up in one hour. This was a Saturday. One hour later, the website isn't working. I tried again for the next 5 hours and couldn't get anything. So I figured it should be up soon, since they say it will be up within an hour.
The next day was Sunday, and what do you know the website isn't working. And since post offices don't work on Sunday I can't mail out my form and get it postmarked on that day so it wouldn't be late. I had my foot in a cast so I couldn't drive anywhere and no one could pick me up to take me somewhere where I could FedEx it overnight. On Monday morning, the website started working again so I filed the report, and paid a $276 fee. I called them and tried to explain but like always, they don't give a crap.
7. If you accidently misreport your miles, and write even 5 miles less than you drove and they see it, let's just say YOURE SCREWED. They will come and audit you and charge you for that, and then a 10% fee and 15% for not reporting it in the first place. Then they multiply that charge by how many month your company was open (5 years max I think), even if they only found a mistake in one report. Please report your miles correct. Let's say if they find a mistake for 113 miles which will cost you $15, if you don't pay it now, they will audit you, and that $15 dollars will turn into a $1125 fine, plus a 1.5% per month you don't pay after that. And if you don't pay, they suspend your account. And don't worry; you have to pay that, not the Bond you paid for that's supposedly supposed to cover that.
Please, tell me what you have to say about Oregon DOT. I think they are outrageously expensive and rip everyone off because they know they have the power to do so.