Surface transportation bill drafted in Senate committee

By |  May 16, 2014

The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee marked up the chamber’s version of a surface transportation reauthorization bill. As drafted, the bill would authorize Highway Trust Fund programs at current levels plus inflation for six years.

“I commend Chairman [Barbara] Boxer and Ranking Member [David] Vitter on their good work in drafting a multi-year, level-funded surface transportation reauthorization bill,” says Mike Johnson, NSSGA president and CEO, in a press release. “The introduction of the bill is another very positive step forward and today’s work by the committee is yet another.

“However, Congress has a lot of work to do and not much time to do it if our nation is to avoid the rapidly-approaching crisis facing the Highway Trust Fund. NSSGA will redouble our advocacy efforts on Capitol Hill to take advantage of this momentum to push Congress to get the job done.”

According to NSSGA, the six-year, $252 billion proposal would authorize new spending on freight programs, add award grants for states’ best practices that achieve efficiency, and maintain the low-interest TIFIA infrastructure loans at current levels. The bill also includes new provisions to improve Highway Trust Fund transparency in order to give the public a clearer view of how and where their money is being spent on transportation projects around the country.

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Kevin Yanik is editor-in-chief of Pit & Quarry. He can be reached at 216-706-3724 or

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