NATSO led a group of 15 trade associations representing off-highway communities, businesses, alternative fuel advocates and the National Federation of the Blind in urging Congress to oppose efforts to commercialize Interstate rest areas as they consider infrastructure legislation this year.
NATSO and its coalition of like-minded associations sent their letter on the same day that the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee kicked of a series of Congressional hearings on infrastructure funding. [First Transportation Hearing Addresses Infrastructure Funding Issues]
In a letter to House Leadership, the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and the Appropriations Committee, NATSO and its allies on the issue said that while they understood the budget challenges that many states face and the need for more infrastructure revenue, proposals to allow the private sector to operate Interstate rest areas are ill conceived and ultimately counter-productive.
“Today, our roads and bridges are in dire need of improvement, and [we] all strongly support increased investment in our nation’s infrastructure,” the groups said in the letter. “Policies that incentivize such investment, however, should be designed to create jobs. Commercializing rest areas would eliminate jobs, while at the same time undercutting a number of important policy priorities that affect various sectors of the economy.”
Signatories included the Asian American Hotel Owners Association; Franchise Business Services; International Franchise Association; National Association of Convenience Stores; National Automatic Merchandising Association; National Council of Chain Restaurants; National Federation of the Blind; National Franchisee Association; National League of Cities; National Restaurant Association; National Tank Truck Carriers; Natural Gas Vehicles for America; Petroleum Marketers Association of America and the Society of Independent Gasoline Marketers of America.
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