CEI Joins Coalition Supporting the AV START Act (S. 1885)

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Dear Majority Leader McConnell and Leader Schumer:

On behalf of key stakeholders that represent a wide cross section of auto and motorcycle manufacturers, suppliers, repairers, technology and communications companies, mobility providers, state and city governments, safety and national security groups, consumers, seniors, and persons with disabilities, we write to express our strong support for the Senate to take up and pass the AV START Act (S. 1885) as soon as possible. 

In a strong showing of bipartisan support, the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee unanimously approved the AV START Act last October.  We believe that this legislation warrants expedited consideration to ensure that S. 1885 can be reconciled with its House counterpart legislation (H.R. 3388, the SELF DRIVE Act), which passed the full-House of Representatives by voice vote on September 6, 2017.

The Senate bill strengthens existing safety oversight by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and complements the iterative work of the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) with respect to their highly automated vehicle policy guidance.  Many of the concepts originally included in the DOT’s highly automated vehicle guidance are also found in the AV START Act, including technology neutrality between automakers and technology companies.  In addition, the legislation will help provide a clear delineation of federal and state roles with respect to highly automated vehicles—a critical aspect that will protect against a patchwork of regulations that could stifle innovation, job growth, and the development of safety technologies that will reduce the number of lives lost on U.S. roadways.

While there are a number of compelling reasons to expedite Senate floor consideration of the AV START Act, the most important factor is the potential lives that could be saved. DOT data shows that human choice or error is a factor in approximately 94 percent of all crashes on U.S. roads—crashes that took the lives of over 37,000 men, women, and children in 2016.

Development and eventual deployment of advanced vehicle technologies have the potential to significantly reduce the number of crashes and at the same time expand mobility options for persons with disabilities, seniors, and those who require access to more affordable transportation.  Further, the decrease in crashes will mean fewer roadway backups, decreasing both congestion and carbon emissions from existing vehicles.  

The AV START Act represents an historic opportunity for Congress to establish a technology neutral regulatory framework to advance these groundbreaking technologies while supporting research and investment in the United States.  Due to these benefits, we believe this legislation will garner overwhelming bipartisan support in the U.S. Senate.  With your help, the Senate and House legislative proposals can be reconciled to enable a final bill to be presented to the President for his signature later this year.  Conversely, the lack of Congressional action on this important legislation will only cause uncertainty and delays in the development and ultimate deployment of such life-saving technologies.

We urge you to work with Chairman John Thune, Ranking Member Bill Nelson and Senator Gary Peters to see that the AV START Act is brought to the Senate floor for consideration before the Memorial Day recess.


Advantage Rent-A-Car, Inc.

Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, Inc.

Alliance for Transportation Innovation

American Car Rental Association

American Council of the Blind

American Foundation for the Blind

American Motorcyclist Association

American Highway Users Alliance

American Network of Community Options and Resources

Americans for Tax Reform


Argo AI, LLC

Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International

Association of Global Automakers

Auto Care Association

Automotive Service Association

Bandago Van Rental


BMW Group of North America, LLC

car2go, N.A.

Competitive Enterprise Institute

Consumer Technology Association


Crown Castle

Cruise Automation


Denso International America, Inc.

Digital Liberty

Disability Rights Advocates for Technology

Enterprise Holdings, Inc.

Fast Track Mobility LLC


Ford Motor Company

Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility

General Motors

Geotab, Inc.

Harley-Davidson, Inc.


Honda North America, Inc.

Hyundai Motor Company

InstallerNet, Inc.

Intel Corporation

Intelligent Transportation Society of America

Internet Association


Jack Cooper Logistics LLC

Jaguar Land Rover North America, LLC

Kia Motors

Luminar Technologies, Inc.


Magna International

Maserati North America, Inc.

Mazda North American Operations

Mercedes-Benz USA, LLC

Mitsubishi Motors

Mobile Electronics Association, Inc.


Mobility 4 All

Mothers Against Drunk Driving

Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association

Motorcycle Riders Foundation

National Cued Speech Association

National Federation of the Blind

National Taxpayers Union


Niskanen Center

Nissan North America, Inc.



NXP Semiconductors, USA

ON Semiconductor

Panasonic Corporation of North America

Porsche Cars North America, Inc.

Property Casualty Insurers Association of America


Robert Bosch LLC

Securing America’s Future Energy


Self Driving Coalition for Safer Streets

Silicon Valley Leadership Group


SiriusXM Radio Inc.

State Van Rental

Subaru of America

R Street Institute

The Hertz Corporation


Telecommunications Industry Association

Tesla, Inc.

Third Way


Transportation Research Center, Inc.

U-Save Auto Rental

U.S. Chamber Technology Engagement Center (“C_TEC”)

U.S. Tire Manufacturers Association

Velodyne LiDAR, Inc.


Volkswagen Group of America, Inc.

Volvo Car Corporation

What 3 Words

Xperi Corporation




60 Plus Association