NAPT MultiView News Brief
Feb. 8, 2011

State revenue up, $10 million more in school transportation money released
AudioBrief State revenue is up more than 6 percent this year, prompting Missouri’s governor to release another $10 million in school transportation funding. Fueled by strong growth in corporate and individual income taxes as well as a slight uptick in sales tax collections, state revenue has grown 6.3 percent. State Budget Director Linda Luebbering says the brighter revenue picture made Gov. Jay Nixon comfortable enough to release another $10 million to offset the cost of running buses in local school districts. "Since we're a little bit ahead, the first place that the governor wanted to provide more money was to schools, and so he's providing this additional 10 million because of that slightly better than anticipated news," Luebbering tells Missourinet.More

Study puts spotlight on red-light cameras
USA Today
The national debate over red light cameras is heating up again as a new analysis from a traffic safety group argues that the controversial devices saved 159 lives in 14 cities during a five-year period. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety says red-light cameras reduced the rate of fatal red-light running by 24 percent from 2004 to 2008. Had the cameras been installed in all U.S. cities with populations above 200,000, 815 deaths would have been prevented, says the Insurance Institute, a group funded by auto insurers that aims to reduce deaths, injuries and property damage caused by crashes on the nation's roads.More

Grassroots efforts continue seeking to end distracted driving
Department of Transportation Fastlane
Occasionally on Fastlane, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood likes to highlight grassroots safety efforts around the country to congratulate the people making a difference in their communities. "I have been particularly amazed by the groundswell of efforts by ordinary citizens of all ages and walks of life who have joined our fight to stop distracted driving," LaHood recently wrote in the Fastlane blog. "From Texas to Wisconsin and Idaho to Florida, they are doing incredible work to keep their fellow Americans safe on our roadways. In Texas, renowned cartoonist Clyde Peterson's simple campaign to get drivers to stop texting in Houston school zones has grown into a full-fledged effort to ban texting throughout the state."More

US proposes EOBRs for all interstate trucks
Transport Topics
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration recently proposed a regulation that would require interstate truck and bus companies to install electronic onboard recorders in vehicles to monitor drivers' hours of service. The rule would apply to all companies that are currently required to use logbooks to record compliance under federal hours-of-service regulations, DOT said. "This proposal would make our roads safer by ensuring that carriers traveling across state lines are using EOBRs to track the hours their drivers spend behind the wheel," Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said.More

Buses fastest growing form of intercity travel
USA Today
Buses were the fastest growing mode of intercity transportation in the USA last year, outpacing rail and air travel, thanks largely to the expansion of "curbside operators" such as BoltBus and Megabus, according to researchers at DePaul University in Chicago. Intercity bus operations overall expanded by 6 percent in 2010, while curbside operators — which don't run out of established terminals but pick up and drop off passengers at curbside — grew by 23.9 percent, says the study by the Chaddick Institute for Metropolitan Development at DePaul.More

DOT takes action to help small and disadvantaged businesses rev up their engines
Department of Transportation Fastlane
With the nation's economic recovery advancing, it is more important than ever to fire up America's small and disadvantaged businesses. And the Department of Transportation is working to make sure that's a natural part of how they do business. Recently, DOT's Disadvantaged Business Enterprise Program issued a final rule that will help small and disadvantaged businesses gain greater access to federally funded highway, transit and airport projects. But this action goes further than just increasing access to opportunities.More

Is a vehicle mileage tax coming to a state near you?
The Infrastructurist
There's plenty of reasons to be excited about the sudden, meteoric rise of EVs and ultra-fuel-efficient hybrids — with gas prices showing no sign of decreasing, fuel supplies showing equally no sign of increasing, and carbon emissions showing the polar opposite of a decrease, we should be thrilled to see momentum building for a drastic change in the way we get from home to work and everywhere in between. Still, one glaring question lives amid all the hype and celebration: If the gas tax pays for America's roads, and that gas tax already barely is covering the costs of said roads, what will happen when more and more drivers start buying less and less gas?More

Bridgestone sets 12 percent increase in truck tire prices
Transport Topics Online
Bridgestone Bandag Tire Solutions said it is boosting prices of its Bridgestone and Firestone brand truck and bus radial tires by 12 percent, effective immediately. The company, a division of Bridgestone Americas Tire Operations, said that "unavoidable" increases were a result of "severely escalating raw material costs, as well as energy and other costs related to manufacturing."More

Third-grade student speaks out against his bully during February's bullying prevention month
February is bullying prevention awareness month for Richmond County Schools in Augusta, Ga. The school board's Anti Bullying Task Force, which has been operating since the start of the school year, is raising awareness this February through seminars and helping parents spot trouble signs. Public safety has responded to well over 50 cases of bullying since the start of the school year, but the actual number could be higher since bullying goes unreported by many students. It can start the minute your kids step out the door to catch the bus.More