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OpenMarket: Transportation and Infrastructure

  • Infrastructure Bill’s Non-Serious Nature Is a Serious Problem

    June 30, 2020
    America’s current surface transportation authorization, the FAST Act, expires at the end of September. Rather than reauthorizing it, however, House Democrats have introduced the INVEST in America Act (H.R. 2). While this bill stands no chance of becoming law, it exemplifies several problems with the current approach to lawmaking from the House.
  • EPA Sends Proposed Aircraft GHG Rule to White House for Review

    May 8, 2020
    On May 1, the EPA sent its first-ever proposed rule on aircraft greenhouse gas emissions to OMB for review. Promulgated pursuant to the Clean Air Act, the proposed rule comes at a time when the airlines are struggling badly because of the COVID-19 crisis and can ill afford potentially expensive new obligations.
  • CEI Submits Comments to DOT on Aviation Consumer Protection Authority Modernization

    April 24, 2020
    Today, CEI submitted comments in response to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s notice of proposed rulemaking in the matter of Defining Unfair or Deceptive Practices. At issue is past backdoor re-regulatory activity that perversely harms consumers under the banner of consumer protection. Fortunately, the current DOT has signaled it does not want to engage in the abuses of its predecessors.
  • House Democrats Dust off January Infrastructure Wish List as Faux-Response to Coronavirus Crisis

    April 2, 2020
    House Democrats announced a coronavirus infrastructure response as part of a “phase 4” relief bill. A transportation infrastructure stimulus package makes no sense as a response to the current pandemic. It won’t boost the economy and we still have no idea how the coronavirus will impact travel behavior—and no idea what our long-run infrastructure priorities should be.
  • New York Times Explains Foolishness of Trump’s General Motors Nationalization

    March 30, 2020
    Last Friday, President Trump nationalized General Motors, ordering the company to produce as many ventilators as HHS Secretary Alex Azar says is necessary to address the coronavirus crisis. Bluster from the White House doesn’t magically retool factories and retrain workers. Worse, meddling from administration bureaucrats far outside their depth may depress and delay production.
  • Fly the (Greenhouse) Friendly Skies, If You Can Still Afford to under the House COVID-19 Bill

    March 24, 2020
    Airports haven’t been this empty since after 9/11, so it is not surprising that airlines would be recipients of tens of billions of assistance in the proposed House COVID-19 stimulus legislation. But House Democrats are using the occasion to try to force through unrelated environmental measures that would raise the cost of flying.
  • Transportation Infrastructure Stimulus Is No Cure for Coronavirus Economic Slump

    March 20, 2020
    As we enter a new era of slapdash bailouts driven by a dangerous mix of panic, ignorance, and opportunism, we face a growing list of bad policy ideas. One particularly bad idea is attempting to address immediate cash flow and near-term solvency issues through costly and slow transportation infrastructure spending.
  • CEI Comments to FCC on Proposed Reallocation of 5.9 GHz Band

    March 9, 2020
    On March 9, CEI submitted comments to the FCC on its proposal to reallocate a portion of the 5.9 GHz band from Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) to unlicensed Wi-Fi. In recent years, the growth of Wi-Fi devices has congested the unlicensed bands immediately adjacent to the 5.9 GHz ITS band, creating tension between the automotive and telecommunication industries.
  • U.S. Department of Transportation Proposes Modernizing its Aviation Consumer Protection Authority

    February 21, 2020
    Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao announced a new proposed rule that would “align its definitions of unfairness and deception with the principles set forth by the Federal Trade Commission,” which “is intended to provide regulated entities and other interested parties greater clarity and certainty about the Department’s interpretation of unfair or deceptive practices in the context of aviation consumer protection rulemaking and enforcement actions.” This is great news for consumers and their aviation service providers.
  • Department of Homeland Security’s "Trusted Traveler" Programs Now Privilege Mexican Nationals over U.S. Citizens from New York

    February 6, 2020
    Late yesterday, it was reported that the Department of Homeland Security has suspended entry of New Yorkers into four “trusted traveler” programs. Today, the department released the letter it sent to the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles announcing this sudden change in policy. Trusted traveler programs came about following the great expansion of the national security state following the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. In a nutshell, screening for both domestic and international travelers was reoriented to presume everyone was a potential terrorist, and then carved out screening exceptions and creating expedited screening lanes for those who willingly submit and pay for enhanced pre-screening.

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