Quebec fleets hope for Covid-19 registration reprieve

by Steve Bouchard

MONTREAL, Que. – With just days to go before its truck registrations need to be renewed, Quebec has yet to follow the lead of other provinces that have eased or deferred payments.

The registration fees are due April 1, a fixed date that is established by the Société de l’assurance automobile du Québec (SAAQ).

The Quebec Trucking Association (ACQ) has been working on this file every day since the start of the Covid-19 crisis.

The trucking industry is asking for a delay, not a gift, the association said in a bulletin delivered on Sunday.

“We have been working on this case every day for almost two weeks. It’s not an easy job, but we don’t give up. This morning again (March 29), some ministries asked us for economic notes,” CEO Marc Cadieux told us in a telephone interview.

The cost to register a heavy truck is $ 1,500 or more, depending on the number of axles.

Maintaining April 1 as the registration renewal date could have an impact on transportation capacity in essential sectors. To improve their cash flow, some carriers are considering removing trucks from their operations.

“At the start of the crisis, a large grocery chain, lacking capacity, asked us to find between 30 and 40 trucks for the next day. If fleets must not renew some registrations for cash flow issues, these trucks, required to compensate for the lack of capacity, may no longer be available,” Cadieux says.

Registration fees have been deferred elsewhere.

Ontario has extended the validity of license plates and many other products. Nova Scotia has extended the validity of registrations until Aug. 31. In P.E.I., those with expired registrations or an approaching expiration date have been given a 60-day reprieve.

Sources tell that it will be hours or days before other provinces make similar announcments.

“We are working hard to highlight the importance of deferring payment for registrations,” said Cadieux. “This would give carriers one of the essential margins of maneuver they need to get through the crisis, and to be there when the recovery takes place.”

In the meantime, Quebec has granted an extension to IRP registrations until further notice, and has informed enforcement officers that vehicles from other jurisdictions are allowed to run with expired IRP registrations on provincial roads until further notice.


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  • They are not only not delaying registration fees for their people, but they are ticketing Ontarians driving by with tags expired after March 2020, a $489 ticket for unpaid registration, despite the deferral Ontario provides. Source: me.