Assigned to NRIPD                                                                                             FOR CAUCUS & FLOOR ACTION






Forty-ninth Legislature, Second Regular Session





CDL exemptions; farm vehicles




             Modifies the definition of farm vehicle within the section of law that exempts drivers of certain vehicles from commercial driver license (CDL) requirements. Clarifies that an owner of a farm vehicle, who transports their property for commercial purposes, does not have to obtain a CDL in order to operate the farm vehicle, provided that the farm vehicle meets other current statutory requirements. Also, exempts a hay squeeze machine from vehicle, trailer or semitrailer registration requirements.




Current law permits operators of authorized emergency, farm and recreational vehicles to drive those vehicles without obtaining a commercial driver license (A.R.S. § 28-3102). The Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) Motor Vehicle Division (MVD) issues a commercial driver license to an individual that is authorized to operate a class of commercial motor vehicles. Commercial motor vehicles are vehicles with a gross weight rating of 26,001 lbs. or more, buses, school buses, or vehicles that are used to transport hazardous materials (A.R.S. § 28-3001).


Under current law, the term farm vehicle is defined as either  a vehicle or combination of vehicles used for commercial farming or commercial stock raising and that meets the following requirements: 1) is controlled by the owner, owner’s family member or employee, 2) is used to transport agricultural products, machinery or supplies to or from a commercial farming or a commercial stock raising operation, 3) is used within 150 miles of the owner’s commercial farming or commercial stock raising operation, and 4) is not used in the operations of a common or contract motor carrier. A common or contract motor carrier is not currently defined in statute.


Currently, a person is prohibited from operating, moving or leaving standing on a highway a motor vehicle, trailer or semitrailer unless that motor vehicle, trailer or semitrailer is registered with either ADOT or with another jurisdiction for the current registration year (A.R.S. § 28-2153).


There is no anticipated fiscal impact to the state General Fund associated with this measure.




1.      Modifies the definition of farm vehicle to include the requirement that a farm vehicle cannot be used for the operations of a for-hire motor carrier, as opposed to a common or contract motor carrier.


2.      Defines for-hire motor carrier as a person who is engaged in and compensated directly for the transportation of goods and passengers.


3.      Exempts a hay squeeze machine that is designed to load hay in an off-road situation from the registration requirements.


4.      Makes technical and conforming changes.


5.      Becomes effective on the general effective date.




1.      Adds the requirement that a farm vehicle may not be used for the operations of a for-hire motor carrier.


2.      Adds the for-hire motor carrier definition.


House Action                                                       Senate Action


TI             1/28/10      DPA      7-0-0-1                NRIPD             3/15/10      DPA       6-0-1-0

3rd Read    2/17/10                   55-1-4-0


Prepared by Senate Research

March 16, 2010