William Fay, the incoming president & CEO of the National Assn. of Truck Stop Operators (NATSO), said the trucking industry has to focus on getting more respect from both government and the general public in order to inject realism into transportation policy issues in the United States.
"Both truck stops and trucking companies need to be concerned about this industry's image," Fay told Fleet Owner. "Not only are we not getting any respect from policy makers and the public, but no one understands the role we both play in delivering the goods and services this country depends on."
Fay said that is especially true when it comes to highway planning and construction issues. He said the government's transportation policy is being developed either from an 'anti-highway' perspective or based the needs of the commuting motorist.
"The greatest irony of the so-called smart-growth movement is that if you double the density of cities and towns, you need twice the amount of goods to be delivered," he said, adding that it is not possible if the network of roads is not expanded as well.
Fay headed up the American Highway Users Alliance for eight years, and helped that coalition secure a 44% increase in highway funding in recent years. He also served as the executive director of the Product Liability Coordinating Committee where he revived a 10-year business campaign to enact a federal, uniform product liability law.