New regs for Friday: Prison calling, stolen vehicles, small business

Friday’s edition of the Federal Register contains new rules for prison calling rates, certifying small businesses owned by women, and exporting stolen vehicles.

Here’s what is happening:

Prison: The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is overhauling inmate calling services so that families can afford to talk to their loved ones who are in prison.

The FCC announced Thursday it is adopting rate caps on prison calls. Some families had reported paying “excessive and unaffordable phone charges” to stay in touch with friends and family behind bars.

The FCC referred to inmate calling services as “unchecked monopolists.”

“Family members report paying egregious amounts, adding up to hundreds of dollars each month, just to stay connected to incarcerated spouses, parents and children,” the agency wrote.

The rules go into effect in 90 days.

Women: The Small Business Administration (SBA) is considering new regulations for certifying small businesses owned by women.

These businesses participate in federal programs intended to give the company a boost.

Currently, women are allowed to self-certify their small businesses, but the agency is considering new regulations that would require more government oversight.

The public has 60 days to comment.

Stolen vehicles: U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is looking to stop the flow of stolen vehicles from being shipped out of the country.

The agency hopes to more closely examine the export of used self-propelled vehicles, it said.

“The purpose of this information is to help ensure that stolen vehicles or vehicles associated with other criminal activity are not exported,” CBP wrote.

The public has 60 days to comment.

Military: The Department of Defense is proposing new drunken driving and other traffic regulations on military compounds.

The rules would apply at Army installations worldwide.

The rules would establish a maximum blood alcohol level of .08 and allow for the “involuntary extraction of blood.”

They also address vehicle registration, towing and impounding vehicles, and the use of seat belts.

The public has 60 days to comment.


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