September 27, 2016

Tewksbury Today: Moulton And Hurd's Modernizing Government Travel Bill Unanimously Passes House

By: Theresa Gilman

Washington, D.C. – On Thursday, the U.S. House of Representatives unanimously passed Congressman Seth Moulton (D-MA) and Congressman Will Hurd's (R-TX) Modernizing Government Travel (MGT) Act, which will help solidify ridesharing options and other innovative transportation services as part of the government transportation ecosystem. Moulton and Hurd’s bipartisan bill will give federal employees greater choice when they travel on official business, enabling them to utilize cost-effective rideshare options like Uber, Lyft, and bikeshare programs. As a result, this bill makes government travel more efficient by reducing federal spending and saving taxpayer dollars.

“Our bipartisan bill ensures that innovative and cost-effective modes of transportation are available to the thousands of federal employees in Washington and Massachusetts for official travel,” said Congressman Seth Moulton (D-MA). “We know that this increased engagement in the sharing economy will reduce federal spending and by passing our bill today, the House has agreed to our idea that we can save taxpayer dollars by bringing government travel into the 21st century."

“The federal government does not have to lag behind-the-times with antiquated policies. With simple updates like the MGT Act, we can become more attractive as an employer, more efficient in getting people where they need to go, and save taxpayer dollars while doing so,” said Representative Hurd (R-TX), who chairs the House Subcommittee on IT, and has been an advocate for modernizing federal IT and embracing new technology. “This bill finally allows federal agencies to catch up with the private sector and moves the needle toward a more innovative and responsive government.”

"Thank you to Congressman Hurd and Congressman Moulton for working hard to move this legislation forward in the House and to those members who have introduced similar legislation in the Senate. Uber is committed to providing reliable transportation at the push of a button for everyone, everywhere, including those working in the federal government,” said Niki Christoff, Head of Federal Affairs for Uber.

 "We applaud the House's passage of legislation that embraces TNC service," said Joe Okpaku, Lyft's Vice President of Government Relations. "Allowing federal workers to choose innovative transportation solutions like Lyft when travelling for work is a great way to encourage more efficient use of resources and ensures that government workers have access to affordable, reliable transportation options.”

Moulton and Hurd’s bill requires the General Services Administration (GSA) to implement regulations allowing federal employees to use alternative transportation options such as Uber, Lyft, and bikeshare for official travel.  This bill will provide greater clarity to the millions of employees serving in our federal government and encourage the use of new technology that increases efficiency and decreases costs. The legislation was co-introduced by Representatives Will Hurd (R-TX), Eric Swalwell (D-CA), Darrell Issa (R-CA), Mark Meadows (R-NC), and Cheri Bustos (D-IL).

Full article here.