(1) All intrastate motor carriers operating under
commission approved tariffed rates or commission approved maximum rates may
charge, in addition to such rates, a fuel cost surcharge as provided by this
(2) The commission may
grant approval for a surcharge upon written request by a qualifying carrier:
(a) establishing that the
carrier's fuel costs (for like fuel purchases) have increased by more than 6
percent from the lowest average fuel cost in any seven consecutive day period
within the preceding three months;
(b) identifying the
percentage increase in fuel costs and the percentage increase in rates
necessary to offset the increased fuel costs; and
(c) establishing that the
increase is likely to be of duration more than two months but less than six
(3) The commission may
grant approval for decrease or increase to an existing surcharge upon written
request by a qualifying carrier establishing that fuel costs have decreased or
increased by more than 3 percent since the surcharge was approved.
(4) The surcharge or
amendment to the surcharge becomes effective on the date approved by the
commission and applies to all transportation after that date until expiring or
being terminated by the commission.
(5) The surcharge shall
be effective for 90 days from the date of approval by the commission, but may
be extended for an additional 90 days. Amendments do not extend the effective
period. Before or after the expiration of the times permitted by this rule, if
the carrier determines that fuel cost increases are likely to remain permanent,
an application for a permanent rate increase may be made.
(6) Fuel costs must be
monitored by the motor carrier throughout the duration of the surcharge. If, at
any time, it appears that fuel costs have decreased by more than 3 percent
within a seven consecutive day period, the carrier shall then apply for a
decrease in the surcharge.
(7) Upon complaint by any
interested person or upon the commission's own motion a surcharge may be
reviewed for accuracy and compliance with this rule in both application and
implementation. If the surcharge is found to be excessive, in addition to all
other remedies provided by law, the carrier must provide each affected shipper
with a rebate of the excessive charge.
(8) As a condition to
granting approval for a surcharge, the commission may impose any lawful terms
it deems necessary restricting the application of this rule.
(9) The provisions of this rule are not
applicable to rates charged by contract carriers unless the contract for
carriage so allows.
in this rule prohibits a motor carrier from filing an application for authority
to increase rates on a permanent basis.
person or entity, whether agent or contractor or other, actually incurring the
cost of the fuel shall receive the benefit of any fuel surcharge approved by
the commission, subject to all other provisions of this rule.
commission determines that fuel cost increases and the surcharge relief
provided herein are good cause for rate changes to be effective on less than 45
day's notice, pursuant to section 69-12-504, MCA.