November 25, 2020

Agency

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a close up of a flag: Hillicon Valley: Leadership changes at top cyber agency raise national security concerns | Snapchat launches in-app video platform 'Spotlight' | Uber, Lyft awarded federal transportation contract


© The Hill illustration/Madeline Monroe
Hillicon Valley: Leadership changes at top cyber agency raise national security concerns | Snapchat launches in-app video platform ‘Spotlight’ | Uber, Lyft awarded federal transportation contract

Welcome! Follow our cyber reporter, Maggie Miller (@magmill95), and tech team, Chris Mills Rodrigo (@chrisismills) and Rebecca Klar (@rebeccaklar_), for more coverage.

LEADERSHIP CHANGES RAISE SECURITY CONCERNS: The departure of the three of the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) top cybersecurity officials over the past week is leading experts and officials to voice concerns that the United States has been left vulnerable to attacks in cyberspace, with national security potentially compromised.

The concerns come after President Trump fired Christopher Krebs, the director of DHS’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), and after both CISA Deputy Director Matthew Travis and top cybersecurity official Bryan Ware resigned following pressure from the White House.

These changes left the nation’s key cybersecurity agency without Senate-confirmed leadership in the last months of Trump’s presidency, amid a shakeup of major government officials following a contentious election.

“Today, cybersecurity and disinformation threats are among the most significant risks our nation confronts,” Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.), vice chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, told The Hill in a statement. “For that reason, it’s enormously disturbing that the president has paired an unwillingness to begin an orderly transition with a zeal to gut key national security agencies of their senior-most leadership.”

CISA, established by legislation signed into law by Trump in 2018, describes itself as “the nation’s risk advisor,” and leads efforts to secure critical infrastructure against foreign and domestic cyber threats.

The agency was heavily involved in coordinating with state and local officials to shore up election security ahead of this year’s general election, and has spearheaded efforts to defend all sectors against attacks.

Read more here.

HOPPING ON THE BANDWAGON: Snapchat is launching a new feature to highlight user-created videos called Spotlight, signaling another competitor for the highly popular video sharing app TikTok.

While Snapchat, unlike other social media platforms, has largely focused on peer-to-peer features, the new Spotlight announced on Monday will showcase user-generated content within the app and offer users a chance to be paid for top content.

The content on Spotlight will also “become tailored to each” user over time, based on their “preferences and favorites,” Snapchat said.

Spotlight was “designed to entertain the Snapchat community while living up to Snapchat’s values, with their well-being as a top priority,” the company said in the announcement.

Snapchat’s Spotlight rollout comes as TikTok’s popularity has risen.

TikTok allows users to create 60-second videos. The platform’s main “For You Page” features content for users tailored to them based on posts with which they’ve engaged.

Read more here.

UBER, LYFT GET GSA CONTRACT:

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TWIN FALLS, Idaho (AP) — Officials from Jerome and Twin Falls counties in Idaho have announced plans to build a third rim-to-rim bridge over the Snake River connecting Twin Falls to the northern part of the state as the city continues to grow.

Currently, the I.B. Perrine Bridge and the Hansen Bridge are the only two bridges spanning the river within a 30-minute drive of Twin Falls, which has caused congestion and traffic delays, The Times-News reported.

The Idaho Transportation Department recently completed a study to determine traffic flow in the area and identified multiple options to reroute traffic around Twin Falls, including three possible river crossing options or rebuilding or widening the 44-year-old Perrine Bridge, which was built to last up to another 55 years.

Department District Manager Jesse Barrus in Shoshone told the Times-News that it could take up to 20 years to build a bridge over Snake River Canyon and would require environmental impact statements, cost-benefit studies and traffic analysis.


“Another river crossing is not only necessary,” Barrus said, “but feasible with federal grants and other partnerships.”

Twin Falls County Commissioner Charlie Howell said the commission put together an agreement on Friday to form a joint-powers commission with the Jerome County Commission.

Jerome County Prosecutor Mike Seib said an agreement would be presented to the commission before heading to the highway districts that would be involved in the project.

“This will be beneficial for everyone involved,” Howell said. “I don’t know why we wouldn’t sign it.”

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New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) announced plans at a virtual public meeting held Wednesday to make unprecedented cuts to bus and subway service, as well as in the surrounding commuter railroads. The cuts, if carried through, will decimate public transit in the nation’s largest metropolis.

An MTA worker wearing personal protective equipment [Credit: AP Photo/Frank Franklin II, File]

According to the 2021 budget plan, which MTA board members will vote on next month, service cuts will eliminate 9,367 transit worker jobs, mostly in the city of New York. The board also stated its plan to impose a wage freeze on its entire workforce, which, when considering the rate of inflation, amounts to a wage cut.

The brutality of the current attack on transit workers was unmistakable Wednesday, despite the handwringing and crocodile tears from Governor Cuomo’s junior executives at the MTA. The massive job and wage cuts were announced shortly after the New York City Transit chief announced the death of two more workers, at least one from COVID-19. According to a tally by rank-and-file transit workers, the coronavirus death toll for active New York City transit workers is now approaching 150.

The pandemic has led to a sustained drop in fare collection, cutting off one of the MTA’s primary revenue streams. Subway ridership in November is down nearly 70 percent compared to last year, while bus passengers are down by half.

Agency and government officials have pinned any hopes of avoiding the budget apocalypse on the prospects of another federal bailout. The MTA has a shortfall of nearly $2.5 billion for the rest of this year and more than $6 billion for 2020. The requested $12 billion supplemental bailout to balance the books through 2022 remains nowhere in sight, and there is little chance it will pass the lame-duck Congress before the budget approval in December.

The response by the Democratic Party functionaries that compose the MTA board makes clear they intend to put the full burden of the budget crisis on the MTA workforce and the riding public. Under the plan, entire subway, bus, and commuter rail routes will disappear, and service on remaining routes reduced in frequency.

The cuts to the bus system are the most severe. The MTA plans to ax 5,869 jobs concurrent with a 40 percent reduction in bus service. These cuts will devastate not only bus workers and their families but also the disproportionately poor and elderly riders who rely on bus service.

These planned cuts could have a disastrous impact on the region’s livelihood. An analysis by the NYU Rudin Center for Transportation projected a reduction of $65 billion in gross domestic product leading to a loss of 450,000 jobs by 2022. “Simply put, without reliable and safe subway, bus and commuter rail services, the future of the city and region is in doubt. Students will not be able to get to school, essential workers to their jobs, and offices will remain empty,” Mitchell L. Moss, director of the Rudin Center,

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Another state Motor Vehicle Commission agency closed its doors Thursday, bringing the number of centers that have shuttered due to COVID-19 to nine.

The Lodi licensing center was closed after an employee tested positive for COVID-19 and will reopen on Dec. 3, the state announced Thursday evening.

It was unclear when the infected employee was last in the building.

Eight other MVC Centers remain closed due to an employee testing positive for COVID-19 at each location, and will reopen on the following dates:

  • Trenton Regional/Vehicle Center – reopens Friday.
  • Eatontown Regional/Licensing Center – reopens Friday.
  • Rahway Licensing Center – reopens Nov. 24.
  • Bayonne Licensing Center – reopens Nov. 25.
  • Wallington Vehicle Center – reopens Nov. 25.
  • Lakewood Vehicle Center – reopens Nov. 28.
  • Flemington Vehicle Center – reopens Nov. 30.
  • Delanco Center -reopens Nov. 30.

The Runnemede Vehicle Center reopened Thursday.

Drivers should check the NJMVC.gov website before going to an agency to determine its status.

Reporter Larry Higgs contributed to this article.

Thank you for relying on us to provide the journalism you can trust. Please consider supporting NJ.com with a voluntary subscription.

Chris Sheldon may be reached at [email protected].

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DETROIT — The U.S. government’s road safety agency is asking for public comment on how it should regulate safe deployment of self-driving vehicles.

Seeking public comment is an early step in drawing up possible regulations, but that process takes years and could be changed by the incoming administration of President-elect Joe Biden.

About 60 companies are already testing autonomous vehicles, some on public roadways without human backup drivers. One, Alphabet Inc.’s Waymo, is running a limited fully autonomous ride-hailing service in the Phoenix area.

So far the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has taken a voluntary approach to autonomous vehicles without standards and regulations. That has brought criticism from the National Transportation Safety Board and safety advocates for being too hands-off.

NHTSA said Thursday that it wants public input on a proposed regulation of autonomous vehicle sensors, how the vehicles detect other road users and infrastructure, how they plan routes and how they carry out that plan.

“This rulemaking will help address legitimate public concerns about safety, security and privacy without hampering innovation in the development of automated driving systems,” said Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, whose department includes NHTSA.

The agency says in documents that a new generation of motor vehicle safety standards should give manufacturers of vehicles, sensors, software and other autonomous vehicle technology “sufficient flexibility to change and improve without the need for frequent modifications to the regulations.”

Last year the NTSB blamed lax regulation in part for a 2018 crash involving an Uber autonomous test vehicle in which a pedestrian was killed.

“There’s no requirement. There’s no evaluation. There’s no real standards issued,” NTSB member Jennifer Homendy said at the time.

While NHTSA is looking at standards, it said in the proposed rulemaking documents that it will address unreasonable safety risks by using its existing defect-investigation and remediation powers. It said any regulations must be supported by data on safety needs without stifling innovation.

Jason Levine, executive director of the nonprofit Center for Auto Safety, called the request for public input strange because it comes at the end of the Trump administration. His organization petitioned NHTSA seeking autonomous vehicle regulations two years ago but heard nothing, he said.

The 60-day comment period, he said, will expire about the time of Biden’s scheduled inauguration, he said.

“The optimistic way of looking at it is the DOT (Department of Transportation) finally decided that a zero oversight of the self-driving car industry was a bad idea,” he said.

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. auto safety regulators said Thursday they are opening a formal regulatory proceeding that could eventually result in the adoption of new safety standards for autonomous vehicles.



a close up of a car: FILE PHOTO: A Waymo Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid self-driving vehicle is parked and displayed during a demonstration


© Reuters/CAITLIN O’HARA
FILE PHOTO: A Waymo Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid self-driving vehicle is parked and displayed during a demonstration

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) said it was issuing an advance notice of proposed rulemaking to get public input on how to ensure the safety of future self-driving vehicles. Companies like General Motors Co, Alphabet Inc’s Waymo and Tesla Inc are working on vehicles that can drive themselves.

Video: Transit Agencies Form ‘Mask Force’ (CBS New York)

Transit Agencies Form ‘Mask Force’

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“This rulemaking will help address legitimate public concerns about safety, security and privacy without hampering innovation in the development of automated driving systems,” said U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao in a statement.

NHTSA said the proceeding could result in the agency issuing new guidance documents addressing best industry practices, providing information to consumers or formal regulations including rules requiring reporting and disclosures to new legally binding safety standards on automated driving systems. Any final rules are still likely years away.



The GM logo is pictured at the General Motors Assembly Plant in Ramos Arizpe


© Reuters/DANIEL BECERRIL
The GM logo is pictured at the General Motors Assembly Plant in Ramos Arizpe

(Reporting by David Shepardson; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)

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The Kauai Bus logo

 

 

__________________________________________________________

The Kaua’i Bus operates a Public (Fixed Route) bus service and a Paratransit (Door-to-Door) bus service from Hanalei to Kekaha daily.

Fixed Route Service: (bus stop to bus stop)

Monday – Friday  5:15 a.m. – 10:50 p.m.
Saturday, Sunday and Holiday  6:00 a.m. – 8:45 p.m.

For Observed Holidays in 2020, please click here.

 Each bus has a destination sign on the front and curb side of the bus, displaying the route number.

Although Drivers follow a predetermined schedule, arrival at bus stops may be affected by traffic, operating conditions and route deviations.

For up-to-date bus schedules, please click here.

To apply for an ADA Reduced Fare ID Card please click here.



Paratransit Service:
Paratransit service is available for qualified individuals in the categories below. Service days and hours are the same as public transportation. Reservations are required 24 hours in advance for door-to-door pickups.  Reservations can also be emailed to [email protected]

  • Senior: Individuals must be 65 years and older and registered with the County Transportation Agency..
  • ADA: (Americans with Disabilities Act) – Individuals must be certified and registered as ADA eligible for service.

Printed information is available in alternate formats within seven (7) days of a request.

(paratransit routes that go beyond the ADA 3/4 mile corridor will have seats open to the general public on a space available basis.)

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AA (pedal cycle)

A vehicle designed to be propelled through a mechanism solely by human power.

AB (power-assisted pedal cycle)

A pedal cycle to which is attached one or more auxiliary propulsion motors having a combined maximum power output not exceeding 300 watts.

LA (moped with two wheels)*

A motor vehicle (other than a power-assisted pedal cycle) that:

  • has two wheels, and
  • either:

–    has an engine cylinder capacity not exceeding 50ml and a maximum speed not exceeding 50km/h, or

–    has a power source other than a piston engine and a maximum speed not exceeding 50km/h.

LB (moped with three wheels)

A motor vehicle (other than a power-assisted pedal cycle) that:

  • has three wheels, and
  • either:

–    has an engine cylinder capacity not exceeding 50ml and a maximum speed not exceeding 50km/h, or

–    has a power source other than a piston engine and a maximum speed not exceeding 50km/h.

An LB 1 motor vehicle has one wheel at the front and two wheels at the rear. An LB 2 motor vehicle has two wheels at the front and one wheel at the rear.

LC (motorcycle)

A motor vehicle that:

  • has two wheels, and
  • either:

–    has an engine cylinder capacity exceeding 50ml, or

–    has a maximum speed exceeding 50km/h.

LD (motorcycle and side-car)

A motor vehicle that:

  • has three wheels asymmetrically arranged in relation to the longitudinal median axis, and
  • either:

–    has an engine cylinder capacity exceeding 50ml, or

–    has a maximum speed exceeding 50km/h.

DEFINITION: 
side-car

A car, box or other receptacle attached to the side of a motorcycle and supported by a wheel.

LE (motor tricycle)

A motor vehicle that:

  • has three wheels symmetrically arranged in relation to the longitudinal median axis, and
  • has a gross vehicle mass not exceeding one tonne, and
  • either:

–    has an engine cylinder capacity exceeding 50ml, or

–    has a maximum speed exceeding 50km/h.

An LE 1 motor vehicle has one wheel at the front and two wheels at the rear. An LE 2 motor vehicle has two wheels at the front and one wheel at the rear.

DEFINITION:
passenger vehicle

A motor vehicle that:

  • is constructed primarily for the carriage of passengers; and
  • either:

–    has at least four wheels, or

–    has three wheels and a gross vehicle mass exceeding one tonne.

MA (passenger car)

 

Passenger car MA

A passenger vehicle (other than a class MB or class MC vehicle) that has not more than nine seating positions (including the driver’s seating position).

MB (forward control passenger vehicle)

 

A passenger vehicle (other than a class MC vehicle):

  • that has not more than nine seating positions (including the driver’s seating position), and
  • in which the centre of the steering wheel is in the forward quarter of the vehicle’s total length.

MC (off-road passenger vehicle)

 Off-road passenger vehicle MC

A passenger vehicle, designed with special features for off-road operation, that has not more than nine seating positions (including the driver’s seating position), and that:

  • has four-wheel drive, and
  • has at least four of the
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