That was pretty fun.
We haven’t gone into DC yet, we’re still out in Arlington at The Truck Safety Coalition office, checking awards, printing data sheets, stuffing folders, making calls, verifying participants, making appointments, rewriting speeches and discussing session outlines. There’s a lot to do.
This will be our biggest conference ever, the most participants and the most confirmed appointments with Members and agencies on the Hill. The very important bill we’re worried about (Transportation Reauthorization Bill) is being “marked up” (worked on) this Thursday in committee, so our timing turns out to be perfect. We will be talking to Congressional staff and committee members on Monday and Tuesday; our views should be up front and center in the minds of committee members as they work on the bill Thursday.
We’ll do the best we can to convince everyone that federal law allowing 33 foot double trailers should not overrun more than 20 states that currently prohibit the longer trailers. Everywhere I go here in DC Congressional staff tell me that issues I want resolved should be decided ‘at the state level.’ And now the American Trucking Association wants the federal government to grant them permission to run their longer trailers right over state laws. And worse, many members of Congress are quite willing to do that!
So. Tonight I am tired but optimistic. And to take a break from all this truck stuff I stand on my dark balcony pointing the camera at a dazzling quilt of light. My fervent hope is that the light will finally come on in Congressional and Agency heads and hearts and that they will make decisions based on safety rather than industry profits or campaign contributions.
This time please let safety win.