HOUSE COMMITTEE ON TRANSPORTATION

 

 

April 4, 2005 Hearing Room C

1:00 P.M.  Tapes 37 - 38

 

 

MEMBERS PRESENT:            Rep. George Gilman, Chair

Rep. Terry Beyer, Vice-Chair

Rep. Chuck Burley, Vice-Chair

Rep. Deborah Boone

Rep. Scott Bruun

Rep. Dave Hunt

Rep. Kim Thatcher

 

STAFF PRESENT:                  John Houser, Committee Administrator

Mike Reiley, Committee Assistant

 

MEASURES/ISSUES HEARD:

HB 2811 – Public Hearing

HB 2609 – Public Hearing

HB 2830 – Public Hearing

                                               

These minutes are in compliance with Senate and House Rules.  Only text enclosed in quotation marks reports a speaker’s exact words.  For complete contents, please refer to the tapes.

 

TAPE/#

Speaker

Comments

TAPE 37, A

003

Chair Gilman

Calls the meeting to order at 1:03 p.m.  Opens a public hearing on HB 2811.

HB 2811 – PUBLIC HEARING

006

John Houser

Committee Administrator.  Introduces HB 2811 which prohibits certain types of display devices to be in operation in a car while driving, if located where the driver can see it.  

015

Rep. Andy Olson

House District 15.  Testifies in support of HB 2811.  Points out the changes in the Motor Vehicle Code.  Refers to ORS 815.240.  Explains the changes in technology and how they are addressed by HB 2811. 

050

Mark Landauer

Office of Government Relations, City of Portland.  Testifies and submits written testimony in support of HB 2811 (EXHIBIT A).  Explains that HB 2811 expands the spirit of ORS 815.240.  Points out the difficulties law enforcement officers have in stopping erratic drivers before a reckless act occurs.

092

Landauer

States that HB 2811 limits its application to screens that can be used only for entertainment purposes.  Continues that image display devices related to navigation or operation of the vehicle are exempted. Describes the -5 amendments (EXHIBIT B) which add to the exemptions in HB 2811.

126

Lt. Vince Jarmer

Portland Traffic Bureau, City of Portland.  Testifies in support of HB 2811. Explains the importance of updating statute to more accurately reflect current standards.  Reiterates that HB 2811 continues to allow officers to be more preemptive. 

157

Jarmer

Describes traffic problems in Portland and the large numbers of vehicles with portable DVD players. 

185

Landauer

Refers to the CNN article on a “DVD murder case” included in EXHIBIT A.

191

Rep. Thatcher

Agrees with the concept of prohibiting watching videos while driving.  Refers to Line 6 of the -5 amendments.  Asks how a commercial motor vehicle is determined.

211

Landauer

Explains the intent of HB 2811 and indicates that clarifying language may be needed.

234

Rep. Thatcher

Suggests some wording to address the problem.

238

Landauer

Explains the difficulty in defining “entertainment.”  Offers that the list of exemptions was an attempt to deal with the issue.

255

Rep. Thatcher

Asks how law enforcement officers would be able to determine that a device was being used improperly. 

264

Jarmer

Responds that officers would have the authority to stop and investigate.

277

Rep. Boone

Inquires how map screens would be addressed.

280

Landauer

Cites language in Line 16 of HB 2811 that exempts navigation systems.

290

Rep. Boone

Wonders if driving while viewing a map is different from watching videos.

298

Landauer

Acknowledges the difficulty in addressing the issue and regrets that some drivers do not use common sense causing legislation to allow officers to investigate suspicious behavior.

312

Rep. Boone

Comments about reading while driving.

320

Rep. Hunt

Seeks clarification that HB 2811 exempts use of navigational equipment.

327

Landauer

Refers to Line 4 of the -5 amendments and Line 18 of HB 2811 that exempt devices not attached to the car.

346

Rep. Burley

Expresses concern about changing the specific language “vehicle television equipment” to “image displaying device” which is now all inclusive.  Asks about changing “vehicle television equipment” to “use of any visual entertainment equipment.”

371

Landauer

Reiterates the intent of HB 2811.  Indicates openness to suggestions.  

389

Rep. Thatcher

Asks if this law were in place now, how many opportunities there would have been to stop a vehicle.

394

Jarmer

Restates the situation in Portland but is unable to quantify how often it happens. 

420

Landauer

Comments that since it is not currently an offense, there is no opportunity to document the issue.

429

Chair Gilman

Asks about accident figures attributable to this problem.

434

Jarmer

Answers that they would be able to determine that an individual was distracted but not the specific cause.

TAPE 38, A

014

Chair Gilman

Closes the public hearing on HB 2811.  Opens a public hearing on HB 2609.

HB 2609 – PUBLIC HEARING

025

John Houser

Committee Administrator.  Explains HB 2609 which adds the eye color of the licensee to the information on an Oregon driver’s license.

033

Mike Dewey

Digimark.  Explains that his company provides driver’s license services through contract to many states.  Testifies as neutral on HB 2609.  Advises there would be additional costs for software development but believes the change is within the scope of the contract.  Notes that proposed SB 640 dealing with fingerprinting and biometrics may affect their contracts.

066

Rep. Burley

Asks what happened previously.

068

Dewey

Responds that HB 2609 has been on the schedule three times, but this is the first hearing.

070

Rep. Thatcher

Inquires if eye color used to be on driver’s licenses.

073

Dewey

Answers yes, but the use of colored contact lenses may have been the reason for removing that information.

081

Rep. Thatcher

Asks who determines eye color.

084

Dewey

Replies, the applicant.

090

Rep. Burley

Inquires about the purpose of HB 2609.

097

Rep. Scott Bruun

House District 37.  Explains that HB 2609 provides another tool to help law enforcement identify people. 

125

Chair Gilman

Closes the public hearing on HB 2609 and opens a public hearing on HB 2830.

HB 2830 – PUBLIC HEARING

128

John Houser

Committee Administrator.  Describes HB 2830 which requires participants in the Adopt-A-Highway program to pay all of the costs associated with their participation; appear in person at any public meeting where an application will be discussed; and have their identities provided to the news media. 

140

John Jackley

Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT).  Testifies and submits written testimony on HB 2830 (EXHIBIT C).  Expresses concern about potential unintended consequences of some of the provisions.  Provides information on and costs of the Adopt-A-Highway and Youth Litter programs.  Continues that shifting the cost burden onto volunteer organizations may significantly reduce participation. 

186

Rep. Beyer

Asks if costs are reimbursed or paid up front.

192

Jackley

Answers that volunteers for the Adopt-A-Highway program bear their own transportation costs and the department pays for safety vests and necessary equipment.  Continues that the Youth Litter patrol is a paid program and the department provides transportation and equipment.

201

Rep. Thatcher

Inquires about Line 16 of HB 2830 that requires providing the applicant‘s identity to media.

206

Jackley

Replies that someone can currently request that information in a public records request.

208

Rep. Burley

Refers to existing law that says the department may adopt any rules considered necessary for implementation of the Adopt-A-Highway program.  Inquires why ODOT doesn’t just amend their rules.

214

Jackley

Responds that the department has the authority to adopt rules.

221

Rep. Burley

Believes that volunteer organizations will discontinue their services if they have to pay all the costs.

224

Jackley

Shares that concern.

235

Andrea Meyer

Legislative Affairs Director, American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). Testifies on HB 2830.  Believes that signing a statement attesting to representation of an organization would address concerns and insure against misrepresentation.  Continues that HB 2830 appears to require the department to distribute information to the media. 

270

Rep. Thatcher

Asks if there are rules to ensure that an organization is legitimate.

280

Meyer

Believes the programs run fine and there is not a problem. 

287

Rep. Beyer

Inquires if there are requirements on how often a highway must be cleaned up under the Adopt-A-Highway program.

298

Jackley

Responds that HB 2830 requires two pickups and two safety meetings per year.

308

Rep. Beyer

Seeks clarification that the requirement is to clean the roadway two times per year and attend two safety meetings.

310

Jackley

Answers yes.

315

Chair Gilman

Closes the public hearing on HB 2830.

318

Rep. Boone

Asks about the agenda for Bend.

325

Rep. Burley

Explains that the agenda will be the school zone speed limit bills, the Smokey Bear license plate, and the safe route to schools bill and describes the meeting location.

346

Rep. Bruun

Asks about transportation.

348

Houser

Provides the alternatives.

370

Chair Gilman

Adjourns the meeting at 1:57 p.m.

 

 

EXHIBIT SUMMARY

 

  1. HB 2811, written testimony, Mark Landauer, 4 pp
  2. HB 2811, -5 amendments, staff, 1 p
  3. HB 2830, written testimony, John Jackley, 2 pp