Florida Nears Decision in SUV Safety Review

ATLANTA Officials at the Florida Attorney General’s office heard final presentations late last week for a national $30 million assignment to create a sport utility vehicle safety program, the client said.

Committee members in Tallahassee, Fla., listened to pitches from New York’s Bartle Bogle Hegarty on Thursday morning, followed by Havas’ Euro RSCG Tatham of Chicago and Publicis Groupe’s Publicis & Hal Riney in San Francisco, both in the afternoon.

Eliminated in an earlier round were independent shops Wolf Group in New York, Fogarty Klein Monroe in Houston, MARC USA in Pittsburgh and Cramer-Krasselt in Chicago. Interpublic Group’s Hill, Holliday, Connors, Cosmopulos in Boston was disqualified.

Steve Copeland, client director of purchasing, said he would post the name of the selected agency Thursday on the state’s Web site.

Pile and Co., Boston, is overseeing the review process.

Funds for the project come from an agreement between Ford Motor Co., the 50 states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The states charged that Ford misled consumers about the safe use of sport utility vehicles.