WASHINGTON, Dec. 1, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- The American Car Rental Association (ACRA) commended the House and Senate conferees for including "The Raechel and Jacqueline Houck Safe Rental Car Act" in the federal highway bill conference report filed today. ACRA is a trade association representing 98 percent of the domestic car rental industry. This legislation, introduced in May 2015 by a bi-partisan group of House and Senate legislators, earned the strong support of Republican and Democratic legislators on both sides of Capitol Hill during debate over the federal highway program reauthorization. It is one of the most comprehensive and important public safety provisions included in the 2015 highway bill conference report.
"Customer safety is a critical part of our overall commitment to our customers and the general public," stated Joe Knight, President of the American Car Rental Association and Executive Vice President of Fox Rent-A-Car, Inc. "And because rental vehicles travel freely across state lines in interstate commerce, ACRA has always strongly supported one federal rental vehicle safety recall standard rather than a patchwork of potentially conflicting state laws."
"We are very pleased that the House and Senate conferees have included the 'Safe Rental Car Act' in the 2015 highway bill conference report," Knight continued. "ACRA urges the House and Senate to pass the conference report expeditiously and send it to President Obama for his signature as soon as possible."
"Passage of the 'Safe Rental Car Act' has been a priority for ACRA's members for several years – a testament to our members' commitment to the safety of our customers," stated Sharon Faulkner, ACRA's Executive Director. "Our members' existing voluntary commitment to prevent the rental or sale of recalled, unrepaired rental cars will become the law of the land when this bill is signed into law – a major accomplishment for our members and customers."
The "Safe Rental Car Act" requires car rental companies to "ground" vehicles in their fleets with open federal safety recalls and to repair or address these recalls prior to renting or selling the car. Congress opted to include a more expansive small business exclusion in the conference report, exempting rental fleets with 35 or fewer cars from the provisions in the Act (as opposed to fleets with 5 or fewer cars as introduced). ACRA supported the narrower small business exclusion in the original bills and will continue to work for coverage of all rental cars across the nation under the provisions of the Act.
"ACRA sincerely thanks Senators Boxer and Schumer and Representatives Capps, Butterfield, Schakowsky and Jones for the introduction of the 'Safe Car Rental Act' in the Senate and House and for their diligent work for its enactment," continued Faulkner. "ACRA also thanks Senators McCaskill, Thune, Inhofe, Nelson and Murkowski and Representatives Upton and Pallone for their work to include the 'Safe Car Rental Act' in the final highway bill conference report."