MEMA Takes Lead in Supporting Legislation for Automated Vehicles

Date: July 11, 2017

In its on-going effort to advance policy and regulation that will support the adaption of automated vehicles in the U.S., MEMA has joined a coalition calling for Congress to take action that will make automated vehicles a reality.

The Coalition for Future Mobility includes a wide variety of organizations seeking to realize the safety, social, economic, and environmental benefits that will come with automated vehicles. In addition to MEMA, members include the Auto Alliance, Global Automakers, National Cued Speech Association, National Federation of the Blind, Securing America’s Future Energy, Segs4Vets and 60Plus.

The Coalition’s collective voice will be heard in Washington through a website and radio and print ads, which will start July 11. 

“The motor vehicle parts supplier community is at the forefront of developing many of the technologies that enable automated vehicles,” said MEMA President and CEO Steve Handschuh. “We understand that having the right policies and legislation in place now will help companies do a better job creating, testing, and implementing these critical new technologies that will improve safety, save energy, and improve quality of life.”

The radio ads focus on encouraging Congress to consider automated vehicle legislation as a foundation for America’s future.

“Fifty years ago, at a moment in time when visionary action was needed, Congress passed the federal interstate highway act. It brought mobility to a nation, strengthening the economy in a powerful way,” the ad says. “This Congress is poised to make history again ... to make its own tremendous advancements in transportation by liberating innovation for self-driving vehicles. Right now, Congress is laying out a road map for self-driving vehicles in order to bring a host of benefits to Americans.”

The coalition effort is just one of many steps MEMA is taking now to advance automated vehicle technologies. For example, MEMA has worked closely with Subcommittee Chairman Bob Latta (R-Ohio) and staff on drafting new legislation focused on automated vehicles. In that effort, MEMA is promoting two key priorities for vehicle suppliers: 1) legislative language affirming the ability of suppliers to test and evaluate automated systems and vehicles on public roadways, and 2) legislative language drawing a clear distinction between federal and state roles in regulating automated vehicles.

On June 26, MEMA submitted a statement for the hearing record at the request of Chairman Latta. Witness testimony and text of the draft legislation is also publicly available.  The subcommittee is expected to markup and advance the legislation in July.

Additionally, MEMA submitted a statement for the record to the Senate Commerce Committee for their hearing on AV principles earlier this month.   

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