WASHINGTON, DC – House Energy and Commerce Committee leaders headed to the other side of the Capitol today for a press conference to mark one year of Senate inaction since the House passed the bipartisan SELF DRIVE Act. This landmark legislation would establish the first national framework for the safe and innovative development of self-driving cars in the U.S.

After unanimous committee approval, it passed the House by voice vote on September 6, 2017. Now, progress has stalled on companion legislation in the Senate.

#SubDCCP Chairman Bob Latta (R-OH), who spearheaded the SELF DRIVE Act, kicked things off. “Time is running out. We’re getting towards the end of this legislative year and the calendar is getting short,” he said.

Chairman Latta added, “Our message to the Senators with concerns is this legislation is not, what you might, say an ‘end all, be all,’ but it’s really where we have to get started because it’s a first step.”

Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Greg Walden (R-OR) spoke to the importance of keeping self-driving car innovation in the U.S. “We put American innovation first. We want these vehicles and this technology to be developed here, not somewhere else.”

#SubOversight Chairman Gregg Harper (R-MS) discussed how legislation to support self-driving cars would impact his family and his son who lives with special needs. “Think of what this means to the disability community to be able to go out and go where you want to go. We’re talking about the number one impediment to employment for those with disabilities – transportation. This is a step we need to take.”

#SubDCCP Vice Chairman Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) talked about cybersecurity as an important component of the conversation surrounding self-driving cars, and how the SELF DRIVE Act addresses it head on. He said, “We championed the provision included in the bill that will require a company to develop and maintain a cybersecurity plan.”

“We’re at a pivotal time in the development of this technology. America’s auto industry has always led the world since the beginning of the automobile. As the technology grows more advanced, we need the action by our Senate colleagues to continue to help us facilitate leadership in that area,” Rep. Kinzinger added.

With nearly 40,000 lives lost on America’s roadways in traditional cars, it’s critical the Senate moves forward. The committee remains ready and willing to work with Senate colleagues to get self-driving vehicle legislation across the finish line.

Click here for a Myth vs. Fact, setting the record straight on the biggest misconceptions about the SELF DRIVE Act.

Click here for more resources on the legislation.

For video of the full press conference, click here.

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