Recent comments by Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf could be used as evidence in a lawsuit brought by groups representing truckers and motorists over tolls being used to fund state government. Wolf said in a recent interview that people "are paying too much," and that legislators support removing the law that transfers the tolls to the state budget.
Airbnb will start collecting a bed tax on properties rented in Allegany County, N.Y., under an agreement reached between local officials and the rental platform. The county's bed tax previously applied only to hotel stays, but officials say applying the tax to Airbnb rentals will ease property tax burdens.
Members of the Rochester, Minn., Ethical Practices Board are asking City Council members to broaden their mandate to go beyond conflicts of interest to include probes of disrespectful, unprofessional, discriminatory or retaliatory behavior. The recommended changes were modeled in part on a template from the League of Minnesota Cities Ethics Advisory Panel.
City Council members in Naples, Fla., have voted to reject a proposal to create a city ethics commission. Some council members said they felt the public should have more input on the issue, while others felt the commission was an unnecessary expense.
City commissioners in Springfield, Ohio, have named Deputy City Manager Bryan Heck as the successor to City Manager Jim Bodenmiller, who announced in August he would retire. "Bryan has the experience in public administration and vision for the future that we feel is the best fit to help lead Springfield in a positive direction," says Springfield Mayor Warren Copeland.
Semiconductor devices for autonomous vehicles are on the cusp of handling more complex simulated scenarios and electronic system designs, Ann Steffora Mutschler writes. "Cloud-data analytics of performance of these vehicles is being fed back into the design and manufacturing," says Andrew Macleod of Mentor.
Nissan will implement a program called Nissan Energy, which will reuse old Leaf batteries in stationary energy-storage systems. This is an effort to transition areas into using electric vehicles and smart power grids in the US and abroad.
Congress faces the opportunity to pass bipartisan legislation that will lead to safer roadways through deployment of autonomous vehicle technologies, writes Scott Hall. He writes that self-driving vehicles will eliminate human error, thus saving lives.
Fluoride-based batteries that last much longer than the lithium-ion variety may be in store, thanks to research at Caltech, the Honda Research Institute, JPL and Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. Fluoride has long been known to possess qualities superior to lithium but has been difficult to stabilize for that purpose, a problem now solved with development of an electrolyte liquid known as bis(2,2,2-trifluoroethyl)ether.
On Oct. 15 and 16, the ASME Industry Advisory Board held its fall 2018 meeting at the headquarters of multinational information technology company HP Inc. in Palo Alto, Calif. Twenty IAB members attended the meeting, which was hosted by Tommy Gardner, chair of the ASME IAB and chief technology officer at HP Federal. The event also marked the first IAB meeting for ASME Executive Director Tom Costabile, who attended with several key members of his executive team.