PeopleNet (www.peoplenetonline.com) has announced that it will be working with Permitax Corp. (www.tfsgroup.com) to offer fleet customers tax reporting services based on the data from PeopleNet's g3 mobile communications and location system. Permitax is a unit of TFS Group based in Waterloo, Ontario.

The company provides a range of tax services, including quarterly International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA) tax return preparation and filing; quarterly and monthly Highway Use Tax filings for New York, Oregon, New Mexico and Kentucky; monthly and quarterly management reports by unit, division or fleet; and special request reports.

The company also announced at its user conference in Chaska, MN, that PacLease Leasing Co. is now offering a new telematics system developed by PeopleNet called PacTrac. According to the partner companies, the system, which is largely targeted at private fleet operations, utilizes GPS technology, a network of over 100 wireless carriers and an internet connection to deliver real-time data from customers' vehicles. System hardware includes the PacTrac onboard computer, keyboard and handset.

PeopleNet's three-day user conference had more than 300 participants, making it the largest PeopleNet User conference yet. The company touted it achieved over 40% growth last year, according to chairman and CEO, John Sarto.

Keynote speaker at the conference was 2006 ATA chairman, Patrick E. Quinn, co-chairman of U.S. Xpress Enterprises, Inc. He spoke on creating change in the transportation industry and on the ATA's role in various initiatives as well as the critical role trucking plays in North America. “One complete day without trucking would lead to the beginning of food shortages, increased fuel shortages, further plant shutdowns, putting thousands out of work,” he observed. “Go without trucks for two or three days, and you would see the beginnings of civil unrest…”

He also discussed some of the industry's biggest challenges, including the driver shortage (54,000 new drivers per year to keep pace with demand) and the imbalance between the freight tonnage that has to be moved and the capacity of the current highway system to handle it. “Tonnage demand in our industry is projected to increase 32% by 2016,” he noted. “Our highway system infrastructure is expected to grow by only three percent over the next twenty years.”

Also speaking at the event was George L. Edwards, the founder and president of consulting firm, George L. Edwards and Associates. He encouraged fleets to adopt sound process analysis techniques and follow-up actions for every aspect of their operations from the customer base to the operating network, vendor relationships, maintenance, shop efficiency, safety and more. “The boss doesn't have to know all the right answers,” said Edwards. “The boss just has to ask all the right questions.”