The event runs from July 26-30 in Reno, Nev., and features four-dozen workshops, a hands-on SWAT response to simulated incidents on a school bus, a one-day trade show with more than 100 vendors already booked and the return of the "STN Extravaganza," an industry network event like no other. Register by June 21 to save $100 on the conference.
The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee approved a six-year highway reauthorization bill on Thursday. The legislation moves on to the full Senate. The American Public Transportation Associatoin said bill approved this week maintains current funding levels plus inflation and maintains the program reforms passed two years ago in MAP-21. Specifically, the bill's funding of $261.4 billion, combined with authorized General Fund appropriations totaling $3 billion, authorizes nearly $265 billion for federal-aid highway programs.
Nearly 80 percent of U.S biodiesel companies have scaled back production this year and more than half halted production at a plant altogether, according to survey released by the National Biodiesel Board this week. An additional two-thirds of the 54 responding companies said they already have reduced their workforce or plan to do so. NBB said the cutbacks are a result of a "weak" proposal from the EPA for the Renewable Fuel Standard and "Congress' failure to extend the biodiesel tax incentive."
NBB said the industry supported 62,000 jobs nationwide last year.
The National Association for Pupil Transportation announced that speaker Mark Levin, CAE, CSP will provide "tried and true techniques" to help transportation professional jump-start their careers during an NAPT Summit presentation on Nov. 8 in Kansas City. NAPT said Levin will describe how utilizing resources for participating in industry programs can help student transporters take positive steps in the job search or advancement.
Rotary Lift launched a new blog on its recently redesigned website. The blog is called "The Blueprint" and will be updated weekly with product and industry news as well as tips on improving shop productivity, vehicle lift safety and how to select and maintain the right lift.
"We're really excited to have another way to converse with our customers," says Stephen Sheets, the company's marketing content strategist. "The blog complements our existing social media activities on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Vimeo by giving us an outlet to tell some longer stories. We plan to have something for all of our audiences: heavy-duty and light-duty; dealer and independent repair; and transit, government and private fleet. Everyone is welcome to the conversation!"
"The Blueprint" name was the idea of Sheets and Jared Miller, Rotary Lift's Web design specialist, after they found an old leather-bound book that contained the original blueprint for the company's first lift, dated July 18, 1925.
Vice President Joe Biden and Education Secretary Arne Duncan last month announced a plan to provide "comprehensive guidance" to help schools, colleges and universities better understand their obligations under federal civil rights laws to prevent and respond to campus sexual assault. According to a factsheet by the Office for Civil Rights, more than one in 10 girls will have been forced to have sexual intercourse before graduating from high school, and nearly 20 percent of female college students will be victims of attempted or actual sexual assault.
Meanwhile, the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Safe and Health Students announced its FY 2014 funding opportunities. One of the programs offers $9.75 million to "identify, assess and serve students exposed to pervasive violence." Eligible projects include school- and community-based counseling services, social and emotional supports for students dealing with anxiety or trauma, conflict resolution and a safer and improved school environment to decrease harassment, bullying, violence, gang involvement and substance abuse.
A nearly $24-million grant targets supports for and technical assistance to schools for implementing evidence-based, multi-tiered behavioral framework for improving behavioral outcomes and learning conditions for all students.
The Los Angeles Times reported today that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration fined General Motors $35 million for delays in recalling small cars with faulty ignition switches. NHTSA and the Justice Department have been investigating the company in connection with the delayed recall of older small cars with the defective switches. GM had previously acknowledged knowing about the problem for at least a decade, but it didn't recall the cars until this year.
Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said in his blog that the penalty, the maximum allowed under law, "should put all automakers on notice that there is no excuse –and there will be no tolerance – for failing to notify the federal government when a defect puts safety at risk."