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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Gov. Rick Scott signs transportation policy bill



Republican Gov. Rick Scott today signed a bill that increases the amount of money available in the Florida Seaport and Economic Development Program and makes other changes to statewide transportation policy, such as laws affecting "self-driving" cars.

Scott had until April 14 to sign HB 7027, but he approved it five days after the Legislature sent it to him last week.

The bill requires the state to appropriate a minimum of $25 million yearly into the seaport program, $10 million more than the current annual requirement.

It also changes laws affecting autonomous, or "self-driving," vehicles and who can operate them.

For instance, according to a legislative analysis, the new law allows self-driving vehicles to operate on public roads "by any person holding a valid driver license, without the need to be designated by an autonomous vehicle manufacturer for testing purposes, and without any testing. The physical presence of an operator is no longer required."

The law also transfers ownership of the Pinellas Bayway System from the Florida Department of Transportation to the Florida Turnpike system.

Read the approved law here.

[Last modified: Monday, April 4, 2016 4:01pm]


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