The Minnesota Association of Cooperatives commends Governor Tim Pawlenty's recent emergency executive order that waives hours-of-service restrictions on drivers transporting diesel fuel, fertilizers, and other supplies intended for agricultural use.
A number of MAC's member farm supply, grain, and fuel cooperatives ran out of fertilizer and could not meet farmers' needs due to delivery constraints largely related to the hours-of-service work limitations found in the Federal Motor Carrier Administration's rules. The governor's executive order remedies that situation by suspending for 30-days the hours-of-service requirements for deliveries of fuel and fertilizer used for agricultural purposes, allowing farmers to finish their field work before winter sets in.
"Governor Pawlenty and his staff heard the concerns of MAC's member-cooperatives and acted quickly to provide important relief to our farm supply, grain and fuel cooperatives and the Minnesota farmers that they serve," said Amy Fredregill, MAC managing director. "His recognition of a serious situation getting worse by the hour and his quick response averted widespread shortages of fuel and fertilizer necessary to prepare fields for spring planting."
MAC and its sister organization, the Wisconsin Federation of Cooperatives, serve more than 800 member-cooperatives owned by more than 6.3 million Minnesota and Wisconsin residents by providing lobbying, education, public relations, and technical services for a wide variety of cooperatives including farm supply, health, dairy marketing, consumer, credit, livestock marketing, telephone, electric, housing, insurance, cable communications, worker-owned cooperatives, and more.
MAC is headquartered in St. Paul, Minn. For more information about MAC, visit www.wfcmac.coop.