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TITLE IV-NATIONAL DRIVER REGISTER Sec. 401. The Act entitled “An Act to provide for a register in the Department of Commerce in which shall be listed the names of certain persons who have had their motor vehicle operator's licenses revoked”, approved July 14, 1960, as amended (74 Stat. 526; 23 U.S.C. 313 note), is hereby amended to read as follows: "That the Secretary of Commerce shall establish and maintain a register identifying each individual reported to him by a State, or political subdivision thereof, as an individual with respect to whom such state or political subdivision has denied, terminated, or temporarily withdrawn (ercept a withdrawal for less than six months based on a series of nonmoving violations) an individual's license or privilege to operate a motor vehicle.
“Sec. 2. Only at the request of a State, a political subdivision thereof, or a Federal department or agency, shall the Secretary furnish information contained in the register established under the first section of this Act, and such information shall be furnished only to the requesting party and only with respect to an individual applicant for a motor vehicle operator's license or permit.
“Sec. 3. As used in this Act, the term 'State' includes each of the several States, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the District of Columbia, Guam, the Virgin Islands, the Canal Zone, and American Samoa." And the House agree to the same.
HARLEY O. STAGGERS,
SAMUEL L. DEVINE,
WARREN G. MagnusOX,
THRUSTON B. MORTON,
STATEMENT OF THE MANAGERS ON THE PART OF THE
HOUSE The managers on the part of the House at the conference on the disagreeing votes of the two Houses on the amendment of the House to the bill (S. 3005) to provide for a coordinated national safety program and establishment of safety standards for motor vehicles in interstate commerce to reduce accidents involving motor vehicles and to reduce the deaths and injuries occurring in such accidents, submit the following statement in explanation of the effect of the action agreed upon by the conferees and recommended in the accompanying conference report:
Paragraph (1) of section 102 of the House amendment defines the term "motor vehicle safety” to inean the performance of motor vehicles or motor vehicle equipment in such a manner that the public is protected against unreasonable risk of accidents occurring as a result of the construction or performance of motor vehicles and is also protected against unreasonable death or injury of persons in the event accidents do occur, and includes nonoperational safety of such vehicles.
Paragraph (1) of section 102 of the proposed conference substitute defines the term "motor vehicle safety' in the same terms as the House amendment with the exception that the definition is expanded to include protection of the public against unreasonable risk of accidents occurring as a result of the “design, construction, or performance" of motor vehicles.
The addition of the word “design” was accepted by the House managers not as an expansion of the authority of the Secretary but merely to clarify that the public is to be protected from inherently dangerous designs which conflict with the concept of motor vehicle safety and the performance standards issued by the Secretary. The Secretary is not to become directly involved in questions of design.
EFFECTIVE DÁTES OF STANDARDS Subsection (c) of section 103 of the House amendment requires each order establishing a safety standard to specify the date on which it is to take effect which is not to be sooner than 180 days or later than 1 year from the date the order is issued, unless the Secretary finds an earlier or later effective date is in the public interest, and publishes his reasons for such finding.
Subsection (c) of section 103 of the proposed conference substitute is the same as the House amendment with the exception that in order to shorten or lengthen the minimum or maximum dates within which a standard must take effect the Secretary must find "for good cause shown” that such earlier or later date is in the public interest and publish his reasons for this finding.
A conforming change is also required to be made in section 103(e) of the proposed conference substitute which, except for such conforming change, is the same as section 103(e) of the House amendment (relating to effective date of amendments and revocations of standards).
The House managers believe the inclusion of the phrase "for good cause shown” demonstrates that any party in interest is free to urge that an earlier or later effective date is in the public interest.
PREEMPTION Section 103(d) of the House amendment provides whenever a Federal safety standard is in effect no State or political subdivision shall have any authority either to establish or continue in effect any safety standard applicable to the same aspect of motor vehicle and motor vehicle equipment performance which is not identical with the Federal standard. Nothing in this section shall be construed to prevent the Federal Government or the government of any State or political subdivision from establishing safety requirements for vehicles or equipment procured for its own use which impose a higher standard of performance than that required to comply with the Federal standard.
Section 103(d) of the proposed conference substitute provides that whenever a Federal safety standard is in effect no State or political subdivision shall have authority either to establish or to continue in effect, with respect to any motor vehicle or item of equipment, any safety standard applicable to the same aspect of performance of such vehicle or item of equipment which is not identical to the Federal standard. The proposed conference substitute is identical to the House amendment with respect to the right of governments to establish higher requirements for vehicles and equipment procured for their own use.
The House managers believe the conference substitute will assure that there will not be any inadvertent preemption of a State standard applicable to an older vehicle by the issuance of a standard with respect to the same aspect for performance of a new vehicle.
CONSULTATION Section 103(f)(2) of the House amendment and section 103(f)(2) of the proposed conference substitute are identical. In the administration of this provision it is expected that the Secretary will, to the extent consistent with the purposes of this act, inform the VESC and other agencies of proposed standards and amendments thereto and afford them a reasonable opportunity to study and comment thereon.
ICC PERFORMANCE STANDARDS
Section 103(g) of the House amendment and section 103(g) of the proposed conference substitute are identical. In the administration of this provision it is intended that higher ICC performance standards will relate to things which can be accomplished subsequent to manilfacture, not to things which must be done during manufacture.
INITIAL FEDERAL STANDARDS Section 103(h) of the House amendment requires the Secretary to issue initial Federal safety standards based upon existing public safety standards on or before January 31, 1967. On or before January 31, 1968, the Secretary is required to issue new and revised standards.
Section 103(h) of the proposed conference substitute is the same as the House provisions with the exception of the deletion of the word "public", thus requiring the initial standards to be based upon existing safety standards.
The House managers agreed to this deletion in order to permit the Secretary to consider all existing safety standards, not just public standards.
ADVISORY COUNCIL Section 104(a) of the House bill establishes a National Motor Vehicle Safety Advisory Council composed of 13 inembers appointed by the Secratury, one of whom he shall designate as chairman. Three of the members are to be representatives of manufacturers of motor vehicles, two representatives of manufactures of motor vehicle equipment, three representatives of State and local governments and five public representatives. Seven inembers constitute a quorum and their terms of office are for 4 years except the initial appointees will be appointed so as to provide staggered terms of office. A vacancy in the Council is to be filled in the same manner as an original appointment.
Section 104(b) of the House amendment requires the Secretary to seek the advice and recommendation of the Council before establishing, amending, or revoking any motor vehicle safety standard under this act.
Section 104(c) of the House amendment provides for per diem compensation for members of the Council as well as travel expenses, and provides that the acceptance of payment under this section shall not inuke a member of the Council an employee or officer of the United States for any purpose.
Section 104 (a) of the conference substitute requires the Secretary to establish a National Motor Vehicle Safety Council. The majority of the members are to be representatives of the general public, including representatives of State and local governments, the remainder to include representatives of motor vehicle manufacturers, motor vehicle equipment manufacturers, and motor vehicle dealers.
Section 104(b) of the proposed conference substitute requires the Secretary to consult the Council on motor vehicle safety standards linder this Act.
Section 104(c) of the proposed conference substitute is the same as the House amendment.
The conference substitute will provide the Secretary authority to ubtain a sound cross section of consultants from the public, State and local governments, manufacturers, and dealers since he will have full discretion in determining the makeup of the Council, subject to the overall requirement that a majority of its members must represent the general public.
Section 106(c) of the Senate bill provides that whenever Federal contribution for any research or development authorized by this act encouraging motor vehicle safety is more than minimal, the Secretary shall include in any contract, grant, or other arrangement for such research or development activity, provisions effective to insure that all information, uses, processes, patents and other developments resulting from that activity will be made freely and fully available to the general public, and that nothing therein shall be construed to deprive the owner of any background patent of any right which he may have thereunder.
The House amendment did not contain such a provision.
Section 106(c) of the proposed conference substitute is the same as the Senate bill.
Based on il rollcall vote on this provision the Senate managers insisted on its retention in the conference substitute. The House managers accepted this provision.
Section 108(a)(3) of the House amendment makes it a prohibited act to fail to issue a certificate required by section 114 that the vehicle or item of equipment conforms to all applicable Federal safety standards or to issue such a certificate that the vehicle or item of equipment conforms if the person issuing the certificate in the exercise of due care knows or has reason to know that the certificate is false or misleading in a material respect.
Section 108(b)(2) of the House amendment exempts from paragraph (1) of subsection (a) (the prohibition against manufacturing for sale, selling, offering for sale, or introducing or delivering for introduction in interstate commerce or importing into the United States a vehicle or item of equipment which does not meet the Federal safety standards) (A) any person who establishes that he did not know or have reason to know in the exercise of due care that the vehicle or item of equipment is not in conformity with the Federal safety standards, and (B) any person who prior to the first purchase in good faith for purposes other than resale, holds a certificate of conformance issued by the manufacturer or importer unless such person knows that the vehicle or item of equipment does not in fact conform.
Sections 108(a)(3) and 108(b)(2) of the proposed conference substitute are the same as the House amendment except that in each provision the words "know or” have been deleted so that a person must establish that he did not have reason to know in the exercise of due care either that the certificate was false or misleading or that the vehicle or item of equipment was not in conformity with the Federal safety standards.
Both the House and Senate managers agree that by this deletion it becomes clear that actual knowledge will remove the defense the provisions give. Thus to avail himself of this defense a person would be required to prove both that he had no knowledge of these faets and that he had no reason to know of these facts in the exercise of due care.