NATSO, a national association representing truckstops and travel plazas, has come out against the Governor of Arizona’s push to commercialize rest areas along interstate highways.
In a letter to Department of Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey (R) asked that Arizona be exempted from a federal law that prohibits commercial activity at the state’s rest areas. Gov. Ducey is requesting that Arizona be granted federal permission to launch a pilot program to commercialize rest areas in order to pay for their upkeep.
The federal law had the effect of privatizing highway services in 1960 when Congress prohibited states from offering commercial services at rest areas along the Interstate Highway System. NATSO stated that commercializing truckstops could displace restaurants, travel plazas, truckstops, convenience store,s and other businesses that already exist throughout the state.