Talked with 3 independents today. The "big boys" are going to drop their hourly rate on trucks.......that's right, reduce.......not raise. These independents are worried as heck, 'cause with rising fuel, they are getting squeezed as it is. Here is what I deduced: The big boys are raising the price of materials to cover the decrease in trucking charge with a big picture in mind of knocking out the independents or smaller trucking firms, hence gaining a control of the trucking in this valley. That is the only scenario I can imagine to be happening, a smart business ploy from those that "have" to reduce the competition. So, if you think there is money to be made by owning a 10 wheeler, there is another thing to think about. The pits have already posted on their scales that material prices will increase here shortly.....I would bet the truck hr.ly rate reduction will coincide nicely with the timing of material increase.