Government Affair Updates | November 2023


OAAA’s EVP for Government Affairs Mike Hershey (pictured below) attended state association meetings in North Carolina and Pennsylvania, where he provided legal, legislative, and regulatory updates on hot industry topics.

Legal – Amortization

OAAA Association Counsel Allen Smith issued a Legal “Flash” Report in response to local jurisdictions who have recently considered amortization of billboard structures. You can read the flash report here.

OAAA – Independent Advisory

Led by Diana Stevenson with Grace Outdoor, the OAAA Independent Media Company Advisory group met recently. The group continues to inform on opportunities and challenges faced by independent operators and to ensure that association resources are accessible and utilized.

Federal – Air Travel

The Thanksgiving holiday set record numbers for air travel, according to the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). On Sunday, November 26, TSA processed over 2.9M people, the busiest day of air travel ever for the agency. For an industry dependent on people on the move, this is encouraging for OOH and our member companies with airport advertising agreements.

Federal – Transit

The American Public Transportation Association (APTA) released data on transit system ridership. APTA is a DC based trade association comprised of our nation’s public transportation systems. Their data outlined top transit agencies by ridership, from October 2022 to September 2023: (1) New York MTA – 2.8B trips; (2) Los Angeles Metro – 280M trips; (3) Chicago Transit – 270M trips; (4) DC Metro – 243M trips; and (5) Boston MBTA – 239M trips.

OAAA on Capitol Hill

OAAA and WV Outdoor’s Bill Lodzinski (pictured right) were in the U.S. Senate for an advocacy meeting with staff to Sen. Shelly Moore Capito (WV). Sen. Capito is the lead Republican on the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, a key committee for our industry and with jurisdiction over transportation policy.

Bill Lodzinski, WV Outdoor, in the Senate Hart Building-1

States – ALPRs

The California Attorney General issued legal bulletins on the use of Automated License Plate Readers (ALPRs). California was the first to pass state consumer data protection laws and the first to establish an enforcement agency. The CA AG reminded law enforcement and related agencies of their obligations for storage and protection of personal information collected by ALPRs. You may recall a recent OAAA advisory which addressed ancillary device use, like those that might employ ALPR technology.

States – AGs

New guidance has been proposed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) on workplace harassment policies. Attorneys General from 19 states signed a letter strongly opposing the new guidance. The agency received over 37,000 comments prior to the official comment period cut-off of November 1.

Congress – Airports

In mid-November, House Transportation & Infrastructure (T&I) Chairman Sam Graves (MO) and Aviation Subcommittee Chairman Garret Graves (LA) sent a letter to the U.S. Dept. of Transportation and Federal Aviation Administration expressing concern over temporary migrant housing at Chicago’s O’Hare airport. Their letter questioned agency authority for using U.S. airports as shelters and requested information on what other cities and airports might be doing the same. The Committee inquiry comes as the traveling public begins an extended holiday travel season.

Federal – A.I.

The White House released an Executive Order (E.O.) related to Artificial Intelligence (A.I) use, application, and practices. The E.O. builds on voluntary guidelines released in August and directs the U.S. Department of Commerce to issue guidelines for labeling A.I.-generated content. You can learn more about the White House Executive Order here.