DC Update: Senate Continues To Lumber Through Cabinet Picks; Speed Limiter Rule in Question

A report on government actions that could affect the remote-production industry

This week, the House was in recess, but the Senate continued to trudge through the confirmation process for President Trump’s Cabinet nominees. Confirmation of some key nominees is still pending. That of Scott Pruitt as administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency — a position that will have an impact on the remote-production industry — was supposed to happen this week, but the vote was delayed after Democrats boycotted the hearing.

Scott Pruitt's confirmation as head of the EPA has been delayed by Democrats.

Scott Pruitt’s confirmation as head of the EPA has been delayed by Democrats.

If confirmed, Pruitt will oversee the EPA’s Green Trucking Standards.

It already appears that a wide range of decisions could impact the remote-production industry. On Wednesday, the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee held a hearing on modernizing U.S. infrastructure. At the hearing, lawmakers and panelists discussed everything from the nation’s aging roads and highways to inland waterways and coastal infrastructure. Improving roads and highways will go a long way toward reducing wear and tear on production trucks.

On the federal-agency side, many transportation groups are starting to question whether Trump’s executive order requiring two regulations to be removed before one new one is made will stop the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s Speed Limiter rule. 

Thursday marked the 78-day countdown until Department of Transportation appropriations run out and 233 days until the Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization expires. The highway and transit policy is up for renewal in 1,330 days.

Next week, on Feb. 15, the House Transportation Subcommittee on Aviation will hold the first of five hearings on an FAA-reauthorization bill. Check out next week’s DC Update for news from the hearing.

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