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Venable partner David Strickland was interviewed in an April 7, 2014 Automotive News article on the potential for revamped auto safety laws following last week’s testimony by the head of General Motors. While changes to any laws are hard to predict, some see pressure on Congress to act quickly following the results of inquiries by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the inspector general of the Department of Transportation.

“Time is always the enemy for any legislative effort in response to a crisis,” said Strickland. “As you move farther and farther away from the crisis, other things happen in the world. It's difficult to maintain momentum for things that looked incredibly important just a few months earlier.” One change suggested in the article is increasing NHTSA’s maximum civil penalty. It has been raised from $925,000 to $35 million in recent years. According to Strickland, “there's probably a feeling that the agency should have higher penalty authority than what it currently has, for deterrent value.”