NMA Driving News Roundup of the Week for September 15, 2017

In this week’s Driving News Roundup:

–States resist speed trap transparency—

–House negates Sesssions order on CAF—

–States & Green Groups sue Trump Admin over delay in CAFÉ Rules—

–57 out of 60 TX cities are using RLCs illegally according to an investigation–

Click on the color headline to read the full story.

 NMA Driving News Story of the Week

States Resist Speed Trap Transparency

States are more than happy to receive their annual share of $450 million in federal cash used to run speed traps and roadblocks, but they are now actively resisting efforts to increase the transparency and accountability of the programs being funded. Congressional lawmakers attached a provision requiring states to clarify how automated ticketing machines are used within the 558-page law that provides transportation grants. The surveys are to be conducted at federal expense. “The states arguing against transparency and accountability for their ticket camera programs is rich — literally,” NMA president Gary Biller told TheNewspaper. “Federal funding for enforcement actions is an entitlement, not an absolute right held by the states. The preconditions established by NHTSA are entirely appropriate in protecting motorists from abuse.”

House Rejects Sessions Order Giving Cops More Power to Take Innocent People’s Stuff

U.S. House lawmakers on Tuesday adopted a trio of bipartisan measures meant to rein in civil asset forfeiture, a controversial law enforcement practice that allows police to confiscate property from individuals without ever convicting them of a crime, and often without even charging them. In a series of unanimous voice votes, the House moved to block the implementation of a Justice Department directive earlier this year that encouraged these types of seizures. In July, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced he was reversing Obama-era restrictions on adoptive forfeitures, which had allowed state and local law enforcement agencies to seize property suspected of being linked to a crime, before passing the civil cases off to federal prosecutors.

NHTSA Proposes Return of Drug Testing Roadblocks

Local police agencies caused a stir three years ago by setting up roadblocks around the country designed to “voluntarily” swab motorists for drug use. The heavy handed tactics used at these locations sparked a lawsuit and the ire of at least one US senator, forcing the agencies to retreat — for a time. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced last week that it is bringing back the controversial program. “This study will estimate the prevalence of drugs in drivers arrested for impaired driving,” NHTSA associate administrator Jeff Michael wrote. “The goal is to better understand the frequency of alcohol, prescription, over-the-counter, and illicit drugs, in impaired driving arrests.” Under the revised plan, one thousand motorists will again be asked to “voluntarily” consent to place a cotton swab in their mouth for five minutes so that it can be tested for the residue of fifty different drugs. The roadblocks will take place over six months at up to three sites around the country run by local police departments.

Opinion and Commentary from around the Web

News Stories from around the Web 

National News Watch

Auto Recall News

Automated Traffic Enforcement and Surveillance

Driver’s License Watch

Driving in America

Driving and Car Buying Tips

Infrastructure Watch

Vision Zero Watch

 

The NMA Driving News Roundup is a regular feature on the NMA Blog, where we highlight some of the most interesting driving news stories of the week. If you have a story for Driving News, send the url via email to nma@motorists.org. Every other Sunday, catch the Car of the Future Roundup blog post.

 

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