August 16, 2017
Contact: Tom Evenson, (608) 266-2839
Governor Walker Signs Executive Order Easing Restrictions for Forage Transportation in Response to Drought Affecting Montana, North Dakota, and South Dakota
MADISON – Governor Scott Walker today signed Executive Order #251 declaring a 30-day state of emergency exists for the purpose of transporting loads of forage in response to severe drought conditions affecting crops and livestock in the high plains region states of Montana, North Dakota, and South Dakota. Forage is defined in the order as baled hay, straw cornstalks, or stover used for feed.

“Wisconsin farmers are generously offering to donate their forage to help out farm families in these states, and this order will allow them to transport their donations through the state more easily while still maintaining safety,” Governor Walker said. “Wisconsin farmers want to do their part to help their neighbors, and the state is going to its part, too.”

Under Governor Walker’s Order, interstate and intrastate motor carriers providing direct assistance for the transportation of baled hay, straw, cornstalks, and stover used for feed are relieved from the requirements contained in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations, Title 49 C.F.R. Parts 390-399, and Wis. Admin Code chs. Trans 325 and 327, subject to certain limitations.

In addition, Interim Secretary Lyon of the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection has determined that an agricultural emergency exists, and Secretary Ross of the Department of Transportation has authorized the issuance of agricultural emergency permits to allow certain over- width and height vehicles to transport forage on highways within Wisconsin including the interstate system.

Secretary Ross has also authorized the issuance of general permits allowing transportation of forage on highways within Wisconsin but excluding the interstate system in excess of the weight limitations of section 348.15(3)(c) of the Wisconsin statutes.  These permits authorize weights not more than 90,000 pounds gross vehicle weight, if the vehicle is in combination and combination has 5 or more axles; or not more than 10% greater than the gross axle weight and axle combination weight limitations, and not more than 15% greater than the gross weight vehicle limitations; and to exceed the length limitations of section 348.07 of the Wisconsin Statutes, authorizing only combinations of 2 vehicles with an overall length of not more than 75 feet or a single vehicle with an overall length of not more than 45 feet.

Secretary Ross has also waived the fee required to obtain 72-hour trip permits for vehicles traveling into Wisconsin that are not registered in Wisconsin nor enrolled in the International Registration Plan (IRP) or the International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA).  The fee waiver is effective from Thursday, August 17, 2017, through Friday, September 15, 2017.

To obtain a no-fee 72-hour trip permit, call 608-266-9900.

To obtain an agricultural emergency permit or a general permit, call 608-266-7320 or email

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