Members of Wisconsin Custom Operators, Inc., (WCO) are being urged to tell their legislators how Implements of Husbandry (IoH) legislation would impact their businesses.

The proposed Wisconsin legislation offers an update on the definition of IoH – vehicles used in ag operations – and asks for an additional 15% weight allowance. That would be a gross vehicle weight increase from 80,000 lbs to 92,000 lbs. The legislation also suggests safety regulations and other rules.

“We are following the Implements of Husbandry (IoH) legislation very closely,” says Maria McGinnis, WCO executive director. “It's been a very busy week with news breaking daily about new developments.” She urges WCO members to contact their legislators “to share how IoH legislation will affect you and your business.”

To find the names and contact information of legislators, follow this link.

The U.S. Custom Harvesters have taken a keen interest in how the laws in Wisconsin may change,” adds Dick Kraus, an Elkhart Lake, WI, custom operator and chair of the WCO Safety and Regulations Committee. “Many other states are paying close attention to Wisconsin IoH legislation as a way to create balance between the larger equipment that farmers and custom operators use in modern agriculture with the concerns of local government entities responsible for maintaining the quality and safety of our roads.

“There are different views of how the bills should proceed, even among the Ag Community. Townships, counties, municipalities and the general public also have differing views. The bottom line is that most folks believe that a new law must be in place as field-work season approaches. Creating a reasonable compromise is the current challenge,” Kraus adds.

On March 5, an assembly bill, AB842, authored by Rep Joan Ballweg, proposed a “temporary” law allowing certain moratoriums for 18 months while still incorporating much of the original authors’ intentions. The next day, the Senate passed its IOH version: SB509.

For additional IoH information, visit the following entities’ websites:

Wisconsin Custom Operators

Wisconsin Ag Connection

Wisconsin Farm Bureau

Wisconsin Dairy Business Association

Wisconsin State Legislature