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New law helps veterans gain employment in trucking industry

8/23/2017, 6 a.m.
Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White is making it easier for military veterans to get jobs in the trucking industry. ...

Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White is making it easier for military veterans to get jobs in the trucking industry. Senate Bill 822, initiated by White and signed into law by the governor, allows for an exemption from the Commercial Driver License (CDL) knowledge written test requirement for qualified current or former military personnel who participated in military heavy-vehicle driving programs.

Illinois is the first state in the nation to take advantage of recent changes to federal CDL regulations that grant state driver licensing agencies the authority to exempt veterans from taking the knowledge written test, a move known as the “Even Exchange” process. The new law allows White’s office to waive the written exam of veterans applying for a commercial learner's permit, provided the applicant meets all of the following requirements:

• is a current resident of Illinois;

• is a current or former member of the U.S. military;

• within one year prior to the application, has been regularly employed in a military position that requires the operation of large trucks;

• has received formal military training in the operation of a vehicle similar to the commercial motor vehicle the applicant expects to operate;

• completes a knowledge written test waiver form, available at www.cyberdriveillinois.com, certifying that the applicant qualifies for the general knowledge test waiver.