Iowa Statewide — The manager of an Iowa auction company says the state is making it difficult for truckers to get much-needed hay into the state.
Trucks transporting hay, straw, or cornstalks are often overweight and Iowa requires a permit for any truckload of hay — which isn’t the case in other Midwest states. Dyersville Sales Company manager Dale Leslein tells K-C-R-G T-V the permits are making it difficult for him to get hay into his auction.
Leslein said truckers don’t want to pay for these permits. Even if they did, he said truckers are worried they’ll get cited for not having the correct permits. Leslein said it’s critical to get hay into the state because of a shortage.
A low supply of hay means the prices go up, and that is passed on to farmers at a time when dairy farmers have already been struggling. These overweight permits for hay, corn, and straw cost 25 dollars. That allows a truck to drive on state roads for an unlimited number of times in one year. To drive on county and some city roads, truckers have to purchase permits from those local governments, too. Iowa Department of Transportation Sergeant Neil Suckow tells K-C-R-G T-V the state has given truckers a break by charging 25 instead of 50 dollars for the permit — which is the price for all other overweight loads.
Suckow said the permits have requirements to promotes safety on the road.
Leslein isn’t sure how much longer his business and farms can last with the permits in place. He says the alfalfa issue isn’t going away quickly.
Leslein said a change would help farmers who are already hurting as they try to supply food.
A similar hay and straw auction exists in Rock Valley where they sell on average, 4500 loads per year.