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U.S. Department of Transportation to reexamine civil penalty rate for Corporate Average Fuel Economy standards

Friday, July 7, 2017

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration opens period for comment; publishes notice delaying effective date of CAFE penalties rule

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) announced today that it is reexamining a rule that adjusts civil penalties related to the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards for inflation.

NHTSA is publishing two notices in the Federal Register (docket numbers NHTSA-2016-0136 and NHTSA-2017-0059). The first notice indicates that NHTSA is reconsidering the December 28, 2016, final rule, and seeks comment on the appropriate inflationary adjustment. The second notice delays the effective date of this rule during NHTSA’s reconsideration period.

Seeking comment on the inflationary adjustment will allow stakeholders to provide input and provide NHTSA additional information to inform the agency’s decision regarding how the CAFE civil penalty should be adjusted for inflation.

The delay of the December 28, 2016, rule’s effective date will not have an impact on current penalty levels, which were not scheduled to increase until the 2019 model year.