Transportation Elections & Politics

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California’s New Energy Efficiency Challenge

California Governor Jerry Brown, sworn in for an unprecedented fourth term, recently revealed an ambitious new plan to address the impacts of climate change over the next 15 years. The Governor’s bold initiatives include a...more

Minnesota's $1.9 Billion Projected State Budget Surplus

Both Governor Dayton and DFL legislative leaders expressed their desire to target surplus dollars on long term investments. Specifically in education and transportation, Dayton would fully fund universal pre-K programs,...more

Week in Review - February 2015 #4

MNsure Reform - Minnesota’s already low rate of people without health insurance fell even more over the past year, a survey from Gallup finds. At the beginning of 2014, just 9.5 percent of Minnesotans lacked health...more

North Carolina Legislative Report

The General Assembly convened for the 2015 legislative session on January 14. Lawmakers returned to Raleigh on January 28 to begin the session in earnest. The MVA Public Affairs Legislative Report on North Carolina will be...more

South Carolina Legislative Update

The House of Representatives adopted several ethics reform measures (public meeting notice, Freedom of Information Act/public records, and public official reporting requirements) this week. In addition, the House Ways and...more

U.S. Export Policy for Commercial and Military Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

On February 17, the Obama Administration announced a new U.S. export control policy for military and commercial Unmanned Aerial Vehicles ("UAVs"). The policy, the details of which have not been released, reportedly includes...more

FAA Releases Proposed Rules for Commercial Drones; White House Launches Drone Privacy Policy

On February 15, 2015, the Federal Aviation Administration published its highly anticipated Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on the Operation and Certification of Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (applicable to UAS weighing...more

Minnesota Weekly Legislative Update: 02/2015

The release of the Minnesota Legislative Auditor’s MNSure report this week dominated conversations at the Capitol. Commissioner pay raises were also in the spotlight while Governor Mark Dayton tried to direct attention toward...more

An Analysis of the Problems at the MBTA: Is This the Origin of “Sue-and-Settle”?

On Sunday, the Boston Globe had a fairly comprehensive look at the causes of the current failings of the MBTA. Interesting reading for those who like to belabor the obvious. The short version? Lack of political will and...more

FAA Proposes Rules for Commercial UAVs; White House Launches UAV Privacy Initiative

On February 15, 2015, the FAA issued its long-awaited notice of proposed rulemaking on small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). Currently, federal law prohibits commercial use of UAVs without advance approval, typically through...more

FAA Proposes Commercial Drone Rules As White House Issues Executive Order - Pending Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Rules Would...

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) released its long-awaited Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on Sunday, Feb. 15, 2015 for the commercial use of small unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), commonly referred to as...more

Amtrak Bill Aims To Keep Northeast Corridor Profits on the Northeast Corridor

The House Transportation Committee has approved the Passenger Rail Reform and Investment Act, a bill that would reauthorize Amtrak and other rail programs. The bill is substantially the same as the 2014 legislation and is...more

Week in Review - February 2015 #2

Pay Raises - Gov. Mark Dayton and the Republican House are sparring over state agency commissioner pay. Last month, Dayton increased pay for 26 commissioners and department heads by a total of $802,000. Republicans say...more

What if the West Coast Ports Shut Down by Lockout or Strike? Is it Time to Invoke Taft-Hartley?

Since the expiration of a labor contract in July 2014, negotiations for a new contract have dragged on between management representatives of the Pacific Maritime Association (PMA)—a multi-employer bargaining association...more

NC Politics In The News

North Carolina Representatives and Senators gathered in the House chambers last Wednesday evening to receive Governor Pat McCrory’s biennial State of the State Address. Governor McCrory outlined his 2015 agenda, which...more

Week in Review - February 2015

MNsure - In light of issues MNsure has encountered during its first year, Sen. Tony Lourey (D-Kerrick), Senate Health and Human Services Budget Committee Chair, wants more accountability. His bill eliminates the Board...more

A UAS On Capitol Hill: Cleared For Takeoff?

On January 21, 2015 the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Science, Space, and Technology's Subcommittee on Space met to discuss UAS Research and Development (R&D). ...more

President Releases 2016 Budget Proposal

Earlier today, President Barack Obama released his approximately $4 trillion budget proposal for Fiscal Year 2016, which begins on October 1 of this year. While the President’s proposed budget covers everything from defense...more

2015 Washington Outlook

In this issue: - Congressional Outlook - Senate Committees - House Committees - Excerpt from Congressional Outlook: Deadlines, Expirations, and Important Dates in 2015 - As the 114th...more

Keystone Debate a Sign of Things to Come in 114th Congress

On January 29, 2015, the U.S. Senate passed S. 1, the Keystone XL Pipeline Approval Act, by a vote of 62-47, with all Republicans and eight Democrats voting for the legislation. ...more

Week in Review - January 2015 #2

Transportation - On Monday, Governor Dayton presented his 2015 Transportation proposal. His proposal would bridge the $6 billion State highway transportation funding gap over the next 10 years by raising new dedicated...more

California Legislature Takes Another Pass at Regulating Drone Operators

As part of our continuing California drone law coverage, today we report on the latest attempt by the California legislature to regulate unmanned aerial vehicles. Introduced yesterday by California State Senator Hannah Beth...more

South Carolina Legislative Update

The House and Senate were busy this week with numerous subcommittee and committee meetings – ethics reform, surface water withdrawal, Pollution Control Act/DHEC Board review, and budget deliberations were a few of the items...more

Natural Gas Pipeline Permitting Reform Act

Last week, the U.S. House of Representatives voted to pass a bill to expedite federal review of some spects of proposed natural gas pipelines. Known as H.R. 161, the Natural Gas Pipeline Permitting Reform Act is officially...more

CTC Makes First Allocations of 2015 But California’s Infrastructure Future is Murky

At its meeting last week, the California Transportation Commission allocated $174.8 million to 85 projects around the state.  Some of the projects receiving allocations this month include: You can find a full list of projects...more

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