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Rep. DeFazio to Propose VMT Pilot Program

December 5, 2018

Rep. DeFazio to Propose VMT Pilot Program

Incoming House Transportation Committee Chairman Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) said Dec. 5 that he plans to propose a national vehicle miles traveled (VMT) pilot program.

FMCSA Publishes ELD Guide for Truck Drivers

December 5, 2018

FMCSA Publishes ELD Guide for Truck Drivers

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) recently published a guide for drivers using electronic logging devices (ELDs) to help motor carriers adopt the devices.

Indiana Governor Decides Against Tolls

December 3, 2018

Indiana Governor Decides Against Tolls

Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb on Nov. 30 abandoned plans to add tolls to Indiana’s existing interstates, saying that the state no longer needed tolling revenues because it had committed enough money for transportation infrastructure enhancements.

EPA Releases Final 2019 Renewable Fuel Mandates

November 30, 2018

EPA Releases Final 2019 Renewable Fuel Mandates

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) said it will require 19.92 billion gallons of biofuel to be blended into the nation’s fuel system under its 2019 Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). But in issuing the numbers, the agency failed to address NATSO’s concerns about its practice of issuing small refinery waivers that exempt small refineries from their obligations under the RFS — even small refineries that are owned by profitable refining entities such as Andeavor.

Rep. Graves Elected Ranking Member on House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee

November 30, 2018

Rep. Graves Elected Ranking Member on House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee

The House Republican conference on Nov. 30 unanimously voted to elect Rep. Sam Graves to be ranking member of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee in the 116th Congress. Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) will serve as Chairman.

Senate EPW Committee Looks at Highways, Talks Fuel Tax and Public-Private Partnerships

November 29, 2018

Senate EPW Committee Looks at Highways, Talks Fuel Tax and Public-Private Partnerships

The Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee convened a hearing on November 28 to discuss surface transportation issues. Entitled, “Addressing America’s Surface Transportation Infrastructure Needs,” the hearing largely focused on funding the Highway Trust Fund (HTF), with witnesses telling lawmakers that increasing the federal fuel tax would be the most efficient way to shore up the HTF in the short-term.

NATSO, Others Continue to Pursue Tax Extenders

November 21, 2018

NATSO, Others Continue to Pursue Tax Extenders

Incoming Senate Finance Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) told Politico that he has "very little interest in the Ways and Means Committee" for tax extenders, "except maybe for a couple," which could include the biodiesel tax credit.

NATSO, Others Urge Congress to Renew Tax Extenders

November 15, 2018

NATSO, Others Urge Congress to Renew Tax Extenders

NATSO joined nearly 60 organizations representing a variety of business, energy, transportation, and agriculture stakeholders in urging Congress to renew expired tax incentives through the end of 2019 before the 115th Congress adjourns.

FDA Proposes Drastic Limitation on E-Cigarette Sales

November 15, 2018

FDA Proposes Drastic Limitation on E-Cigarette Sales

In a policy statement issued Nov. 15, FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb announced the agency’s decision to move forward with significant restrictions on the sale of e-cigarettes, flavored cigars and menthol cigarettes.

As Lawmakers Eye Infrastructure, Funding Remains a Key Challenge

November 15, 2018

As Lawmakers Eye Infrastructure, Funding Remains a Key Challenge

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Nov. 14 that he hopes the next Congress can pass an infrastructure package, but that the same challenges in securing funding will dog any proposals, Politico reported.

NATSO ANALYSIS: A Deep Dive Into The 2018 Midterm Election Results

November 9, 2018

NATSO ANALYSIS: A Deep Dive Into The 2018 Midterm Election Results

The 2018 Midterm elections played out largely as expected: Democrats recaptured the House of Representatives for the first time since 2010, while Republicans retained their Senate majority by picking up at least two Democrat-held seats. Democrats also managed to pick up at least four governorships and several state legislatures. The Midterms will usher in a new chapter of the Trump Administration and will have wide-ranging consequences for NATSO’s policy priorities.

U.S. Election Midterm Results: Maps and Charts

November 8, 2018

U.S. Election Midterm Results: Maps and Charts

On election night, President Donald Trump's Republican Party retained control of the Senate while the Democrats took control of the House of Representatives. The Democrats gained more than the 23 seats they needed to take control of the House, marking the first time the party has held the majority in the lower house of Congress for eight years. Meanwhile, Republicans kept control of the Senate and will increase their majority. The following maps illustrate the election results in the House, Senate and state Governor races. NATSO will run a separate, post-election analysis in the coming days outlining what the election results mean for NATSO’s policy priorities.

Congressman DeFazio Plans to Deliver Major Infrastructure Package

November 7, 2018

Congressman DeFazio Plans to Deliver Major Infrastructure Package

Congressman Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.), who is set to become Chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee in the 116th Congress, said Nov. 6 that a major infrastructure package funded by real dollars would be his first order of business in January. Current surface transportation law is set to expire in 2020 and infrastructure is largely viewed as one issue where bipartisan agreement will be possible next year. Of importance to truckstops and travel plazas, Rep. DeFazio spoke about the shortcomings of the $1.5 trillion infrastructure plan put forth by the Administration in early 2018, saying it was full of “pretend stuff” such as privatization and asset recycling, which could very easily lead to tolling and rest area commercialization.

NATSO ANALYSIS: What to Watch for on Election Night

November 5, 2018

NATSO ANALYSIS: What to Watch for on Election Night

Election nights are always overwhelming affairs for those who live and breathe politics and public policy. More than most – perhaps any other – midterm election, the 2018 Midterms will alter the policy landscape within which NATSO member operate for many years to come. With so much at stake, here is a short guide to what I will be keeping my eye on when the election returns come in. (NOTE TO READERS: NATSO will run a separate, post-election analysis later this week outlining what the election results mean for NATSO’s policy priorities.)

EPA Sends 2019 Biofuel Mandates to White House

October 31, 2018

EPA Sends 2019 Biofuel Mandates to White House

The Environmental Protection Agency has sent its final renewable volume obligations for 2019 under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) to the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review. This marks the final step before EPA's proposed 2019 renewable fuel mandates are finalized. NATSO will meet with OMB to discuss the proposal in the coming days.

Republicans Seek to Repeal EV Tax Credit

October 30, 2018

Republicans Seek to Repeal EV Tax Credit

Congressional Republicans are making another attempt to kill the federal tax credit for electric vehicles, after it was left out of their November 2017 tax plan. More than 57,000 households claimed the non-refundable Qualified Plug-in Electric Drive Motor Vehicle Credit for tax year 2016, up from 42,868 in 2015. The total value of credits reached $375.1 million for all claims in 2016 and $251.6 million in 2015.

NATSO Files Comments on EPA CAFE Standards

October 27, 2018

NATSO Files Comments on EPA CAFE Standards

NATSO on Oct. 26 filed comments with the Environmental Protection Agency in response to the Agency's proposed changes to fuel economy requirements that were previously finalized by the Obama Administration. NATSO expressed support for the agency’s efforts to tie Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFÉ) standards to today’s market realities while also providing the agency several ideas for how it could improve a new standard to better achieve its regulatory objectives.

Foundation Brings Fun Run to NATSO Connect 2019

October 26, 2018

Foundation Brings Fun Run to NATSO Connect 2019

Pack your running shoes for NATSO Connect 2019! New this year, the NATSO Foundation is bringing a Fun Run to NATSO Connect 2019 as the yeary fundraiser. The NATSO Foundation Fun Run will be Monday, February 11 at 7:00 a.m.

President Signs Into Law Bill That Contains Hair Testing Reporting Requirements

October 25, 2018

President Signs Into Law Bill That Contains Hair Testing Reporting Requirements

President Trump on Oct. 24 signed into law comprehensive legislation aimed at combating the nation’s opioid crisis. Of importance to truckstops that operate commercial vehicles, the bill, which cleared the Congress with near-unanimous approval, contains provisions on hair testing for drivers.

NATSO ANALYSIS: Trump Administration Pursuing Year-Round E15, RIN Transparency Measures

October 24, 2018

NATSO ANALYSIS: Trump Administration Pursuing Year-Round E15, RIN Transparency Measures

Over the last two years, there has been an extraordinary amount of uncertainty and volatility in renewable fuels and Renewable Identification Number (RINs) markets. This largely has been due to the Trump Administration's desire to "thread the needle" and develop a policy solution that makes both the renewable fuels community and the refining industry happy. NATSO and the retail fuels community have generally been stuck in the middle.

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