California Rest Area Commercialization Bill Defeated

California Assemblyman Ben Hueso’s bill to commercialize the state’s rest areas and pursue a waiver to the federal prohibition on the sale of commercial services on the interstate right-of-way failed last week in committee, marking a major victory for California’s fuel retailers. During the Assembly’s Transportation Committee hearing, the bill AB 2485 garnered only 6 “aye” votes. Eight were needed for the bill to pass from the committee.

The California Independent Oil Marketers Association (CIOMA), the California Council of the Blind and a national highway property alliance testified against the measure, saying it would cannibalize jobs and customers from privately owned, existing highway enterprises.

Calls from NATSO truckstops and travel plazas also helped to defeat this legislation.

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