Here are five things worth knowing today:
1. The U.S. Department of Transportation’s inspector general is examining how effective a federal safety oversight program is, according to WREX. The examination was prompted after a fatal accident involving a fatigued truck driver occurred last year in Illinois. According to reports, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration never followed through on an investigation into the carrier involved in the crash. The driver was found to have violated hours of service and was sentenced to three years in prison.
2. Regency Transportation is appealing the Massachusetts Tax Board’s decision to uphold a use tax assessment on trucks purchased outside of Massachusetts (although stored and serviced in Massachusetts) and used for transportation and distribution services throughout the eastern U.S., according to Reed Smith. According to the report, Regency did not pay tax at the time of purchase, as purchases were made in states that don’t impose a sales tax or states that provided tax exemptions.
3. Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) is making passing an extension of federal transportation funding that will expire this month a top priority. According to a report in The Hill, McConnell said: “We clearly have to do an extension on highways and FISA before we leave for Memorial Day.”
4. Michigan voters – 80% to 20% – overwhelmingly nixed a sales tax increase and road funding proposal crafted by Gov. Rick Snyder and state legislators, The Detroit News reported. According to the News, this was one of the worst ballot measure defeats in more than a generation, and voters made known their disapproval of the proposal, which included vehicle registration fee increases, among other stipulations.
5. A bill allowing an 80 mph speed limit has passed in Nevada, TheTrucker.com reported. The Nevada Assembly passed the bill 31 to 11, and it will now go to Gov. Brian Sandoval.