Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Federal Highway Trust Fund Reauthorization Stalled

There has been no significant legislative action to move forward the stalled reauthorization of the Federal Highway Trust Fund since House Transportation and Infrastructure Chairman James Oberstar’s hearing over a month ago on innovative financing methods for surface transportation infrastructure construction. Everyone in Congress recognizes that motor fuel taxes will be woefully inadequate to fund a six year $500 billion reauthorization measure, yet, in an election year, no one wants to sponsor new revenue measures to bridge the funding gap. Consequently, we can look forward to continuation of the series of three and six month interim funding measures for federal surface transportation projects, and the resulting inability of state and local government officials to make any long term plans or budgets for transportation infrastructure construction projects.

While the construction industry segment of the struggling American economy continues to languish behind the pace of nascent recovery, you would think our legislators in the nation’s capitol would take some interest in legislation with a very good chance of picking up the pace of job creation in construction, but you would be mistaken.
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