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Good News: House Commerce Committee to Hold Hearing on AM Radio for Every Vehicle Act

Over the past few months, the AM Radio for Every Vehicle Act (H.R. 3413) has been gaining support in the House of Representatives.  Today, the legislation has 246 co-sponsors, including 16 from New York. Despite significant support, the legislation has seen no movement through the House Commerce Committee. The Chair of the House Commerce Committee had concerns about the bill being a “technology mandate.” 

This is about to change. Last week, House Commerce Chairwoman Kathy McMorris Rodgers (R. WA) and Ranking Democrat on the Committee Frank Pallone (D NJ) issued a joint statement scheduling a legislative hearing for April 30, before the Subcommittee on Innovation, Data, and Commerce. In a joint press release, they stated:

“Communities across the country, especially rural communities, rely on AM radio service for critical information.  It plays an essential role during public emergencies when other alert systems that rely on the electric grid and cellphone networks don’t work, which is why it's so alarming that some auto manufacturers are considering not installing AM radios in new cars," said Chair Rodgers and Ranking Member Pallone. "We look forward to working together to preserve Americans’ access to this vital source of information.”

They introduced a new version of the legislation. This version has the same requirements as H.R. 3413, which means that every vehicle must have an AM radio receiver as standard equipment and provided at no extra charge. It does provide for a longer phase-in for these requirements. It also contains the requirement that vehicles sold without an AM radio be labeled as such. 

Significantly, this new version mirrors the bill that passed the Senate Commerce Committee earlier. The fact that the language of the bill is the same as the Senate version indicates that the House is serious about passing this legislation.

We applaud Chairwoman Rodgers and Ranking Democrat Rep. Pallone for their efforts and support.  This is an important bill, and we will continue to work to ensure passage.

You can see the joint press release here.

You can see the new version of the bill here.



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