The NMA continues to advocate for motorists’ rights at the national, state and local level. Legislatures across the country took up a broad range of motorists’ issues in the second quarter of 2014. Here’s a brief summary of the driving-related issues we addressed.
Supported Senate Bill 893 which would strengthen privacy protections pertaining to the use of Automated License Plate Readers (ALPRs) to record and maintain license plate data. After passing through two Senate committees, the bill died in the full Senate.
Opposed Senate Bill 1077 which would implement mileage-based user fees by requiring various transportation agencies in the state to implement a pilot program designed to “explore various methods for using a mileage-based fee (MBF) to replace the state’s existing fuel excise tax.” The bill passed the Senate and is now under consideration in the House Appropriations Committee.
Supported Senate Bill 14-181 which would repeal the use of red-light cameras throughout the state. The bill passed through the Senate but died in the House Appropriations Committee.
Opposed House Bill 7005 as amended which would prohibit motorists from having red-light camera cases heard in county traffic court. Instead, drivers would have to fight their cases in administrative hearings, which are nothing more than kangaroo courts inherently unfair to motorists. A companion bill was ultimately passed and signed into law.
Supported Senate Bill 392 which would allow speed limits of up to 75 mph on Florida’s interstate highways. The bill passed both houses but was ultimately vetoed by Gov. Scott with pressure from the AAA. Click here to read a NMA-written op-ed piece in the Orlando Sentinel on this issue.
Opposed House Bill 4632 which would allow cities outside of Chicago to implement speed camera programs. Action is pending in the House Rules Committee.
Opposed House Bill 1557 which would legalize and legitimize red-light cameras. The bill passed the House and is awaiting further action in the Senate.
Opposed Assembly Bill 10144 which would lower the speed limit in New York City from 30 mph to 25 mph. The bill passed both houses, and Gov. Cuomo is expected to sign it into law. The bill is part of a larger package of measures (Vision Zero) to ostensibly reduce the number of pedestrian deaths in New York City to zero by 2025. Learn more about the misguided principles underpinning the Vision Zero initiative.
Opposed Senate Bill 810 which would facilitate the return of red-light cameras to Fayetteville and could pave the way for the return of cameras to other NC cities as well. Under current law, 90 percent of the clear proceeds generated from red-light cameras must go toward school funding. This has made red-light cameras economically untenable in many NC communities. But the language in S810 allows the fees and expenses paid to the camera vendor to be taken out before the “clear proceeds” are calculated. If adopted, this financial sleight-of-hand will allow red-light cameras to operate profitably. The bill is under consideration in the Senate Finance Committee.
Opposed House Bill 469 which would require first-time OVI offenders to install ignition interlock devices (IIDs) in their vehicles. IIDs have proven unreliable, and a well-documented California DMV study found first-time offenders with interlocks on their cars had higher subsequent accident rates than first-time offenders without the devices. The bill is under consideration in the House Judiciary Committee.
Opposed Senate Bill 1211 which would allow speed cameras along Highway 1 in Philadelphia. The bill is currently under consideration in the Senate Transportation Committee.
Opposed Senate Bill 1340 which would allow local police forces to use radar and laser for speed enforcement. Pennsylvania is the only state (or commonwealth) in the country that prohibits municipal police from enforcing speed limits with radar. The bill is currently under consideration in the Senate Transportation Committee.
Thanks to the many NMA members who volunteered their time to send emails, write letters, make phone calls, and work with policymakers and media outlets on these important issues. If you’re not signed up to receive legislative alerts but would like to, use the “Choose Your NMA E-Subscriptions” link in the sidebar of this email.