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American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

Trucking American Government Topics:  Rodney E. Slater, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, Clyde J. Hart Jr.


U.S. Department of Transportation
May 19, 2000

Friday, May 19, 2000
Contact: Bill Adams
Tel.: (202) 366-5580
DOT 97-00

U.S. Secretary of Transportation Rodney E. Slater announced today that Clyde J. Hart, Jr., Administrator of the U.S. Maritime Administration (MARAD), will serve as the acting Deputy Administrator of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). This assignment is effective as of May 22, 2000.

The newest mode within the Department and the first new agency of the new century and new millennium, FMCSA, was established Jan 1. Its mission is to improve roadway safety by preventing commercial motor vehicle-related injuries and fatalities.

"Clyde's experience both on Capitol Hill and within the Department of Transportation position him well to deal with the immediate challenges facing FMCSA," Secretary Slater said. "His willingness to take on this challenge and to address key safety issues, the top transportation priorities of President Clinton and Vice President Gore, is to be commended."

Following his nomination as Maritime Administrator by President Clinton, Hart was confirmed by the Senate in August 1998. As Administrator of MARAD, Hart has co-chaired the highly successful Marine Transportation System review and has led the Administration’s promising maritime negotiations with Japan, Korea and China. He previously served for four years as the Senior Democratic Counsel of the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation. There, he advised Committee members on legislative issues and oversight matters and assisted in the development of policy positions and legislative initiatives.

In his Congressional work, Hart was intricately involved in key transportation legislation dealing with regulatory reform of the trucking industry, pipeline safety, reform of Amtrak, reauthorization of the Federal Aviation Administration, the termination of the Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC), and the Maritime Security Act of 1996.

Hart will serve in this acting capacity at FMCSA on a temporary basis. During this time, Deputy Administrator John Graykowski will serve as acting Administrator of MARAD. Julie Cirillo, formerly acting Deputy Administrator of FMCSA, will now serve as the Acting Chief Safety Officer.

In this position, Clyde Hart’s first challenge will be to improve safety in motor carrier operations through strong enforcement of safety regulations. That means targeting high-risk carriers and commercial motor vehicle drivers and improving safety information systems and commercial motor vehicle technologies.

"We need to strengthen commercial motor vehicle equipment and operating standards and increase safety awareness," said Hart. "I will be working closely with federal, state, and local enforcement agencies, the motor carrier industry, safety and labor interest groups, and others to achieve this goal."


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