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GHSA News Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 15, 2008

Contact: Jonathan Adkins
(202)789-0942, jadkins@ghsa.org

GHSA Praises Highway Reauthorization Report Yet Concerned About State Goal-Setting

Statement for Attribution to Barbara Harsha, Executive Director of the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA)

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Today, the National Surface Transportation Policy and Revenue Study Commission released a broad new report detailing its recommendations for the next highway reauthorization. The report was based on numerous hearings across the nation at which highway interests, including GHSA, testified. The report is available at www.transportationfortomorrow.org.

GHSA mostly supports the report’s safety recommendations. In fact, many of the recommendations are already being implemented at the state level. These include: strengthening graduated licensing laws, stronger enforcement of laws, effective public information campaigns and greater use of technology to prevent drunk driving.

GHSA is concerned, however, that the Commission has recommended state safety “standards” (that is, goals) be set by the U.S. Department of Transportation through “consultations with safety interests including state and local departments of transportation and other governmental units.” Currently, state safety goals are set by the states as dictated by numerous federal statutes including the last highway reauthorization known as SAFETEA-LU. Further, state highway safety programs are already based on performance measures and performance outcomes. GHSA strongly objects to any effort to give the federal government greater authority over state goal-setting and program implementation.

GHSA thanks the Commission for their important work and looks forward to working with them as we begin the highway reauthorization process.

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The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA)® is a nonprofit association representing the highway safety offices of states, territories, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. GHSA provides leadership and representation for the states and territories to improve traffic safety, influence national policy and enhance program management. Its members are appointed by their Governors to administer federal and state highway safety funds and implement state highway safety plans. Contact GHSA at 202-789-0942 or visit www.ghsa.org.