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Roundup: September 21, 2016

State News

Welcome aboard the Plane Train…we’re about to get longer!

On September 15, Atlanta Journal Constitution columnist Kyle Wingfield offered some wise words on autonomous vehicle technology.

At the perennially popular State of the Ports luncheon in Savannah last week, new Georgia Ports Authority Executive Director Griff Lynch announced plans to expand rail capacity in such a way to increase capacity at the ports by 1,000,000 containers per year. The International Multi-Modal Connector will take roughly three years to complete and will double the port’s throughput capacity.

National News

Case debuted a driverless tractor at the Farm Progress Show.

This week, the Senate passed a water infrastructure bill with over $10.5 billion that includes $220 million for Flint, Michigan in helping to recover from the recent water crisis. Senate Environment and Public Works Chairman Jim Inhofe (R – OK), has promised to fight to keep the aid for Flint in the conference committee report. House Transportation and Infrastructure Chairman Bill Shuster (R – PA) announced the House could proceed on their smaller version next week.

The freight transportation services index increased 1.6% from June to July. Domestic and international airline scheduled service load factor (airline capacity measurement), rose to 83.6% in June, the third straight month of growth.

This week, the Senate passed their version of the Water Resources Development Act. Chairman Bill Shuster has announced his goal to do the House’s version next week, setting up a lame-duck conference. Two years ago, after the last WRRDA authorization, Chairman Shuster made it clear his goal was to do a WRDA bill every two years, and the current schedule has industry advocates happy with the process.

According to the Eno Center for Transportation, this year’s November ballot will present voters across the United States with almost $500 billion in transportation initiatives across all modes of transportation – $200 billion of which are focused on transit (76 proposals around the country).

This week, Uber began its driverless service pilot project in Pittsburgh.

Between now and the end of the year, Congressional focus will be almost exclusively on funding the government, many expect transportation lobbyists to slip in various transportation riders focused on Amtrak funding and trucker rest requirements (the latter from a mistake in the 2016 omnibus). The rest requirements would make the 34-hour restart rule from 2011 apply to commercial truckers and prevent enforcement of two 2013 requirements on off-duty periods and limiting the number of restarts per week. The Amtrak language follows several months of previous work by Amtrak and FRA.

On September 16, 1908, William Durant created General Motors.

International News

South Korean shipper Hanjin has filed for bankruptcy, throwing additional instability into an already-precarious international shipping marketplace. An estimated 25,000 containers cross the Pacific each day on Hanjin ships.

On September 10, 1897, the first drunk driving arrest occurred to a 25 year old taxi driver in London, England.

Upcoming Events

2016 Transportation Summit
November 30, 2016   |   Athens, Georgia   |   Register Here!

State of the System: Join us for a full-day focused on the state of transportation in Georgia – from roads and bridges to ports and airports.

Statewide Transportation Forum with U.S. Representative Rob Woodall

Join GTA and our partners around the state for our October Transportation Forums. Congressman Rob Woodall, Georgia’s member of the United States House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, will share with us his experience during the first year of membership on the committee. Congressman Woodall will be highlighting the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act, the Water Resources Reform and Development Act, and several other federal issues and the difference they are making in your community. We will conclude with a Q&A session with Congressman Woodall and a representative from the Georgia Department of Transportation.

To access more information on a forum near you and register for free, visit events page.

Preparing for the Overtime Rule: A Two-Part Webinar Series

Part One: Explaining the Overtime Rule & Conversations to Have Now Thursday, September 29, 9:00-10:00 AM

Part Two: Preparing for the Overtime Rule Compliance: Best Practices Panel Thursday, October 27, 9:00-10:00 AM

On May 18, 2016, The US Department of Labor unveiled the new standards of its overtime rule, impacting exceptions under the Fair Labor Standards Act and its regulations. This momentous ruling will affect thousands of Georgians. Make sure your business is prepared for the December 1, 2016 effective date by attending the upcoming two-part webinar series. Attendees will earn an hour of HRCI/SHRM credit per webinar. For a full description of each webinar, or to register, click here!

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