Thursday, May 14, 2015

Federal Surface Transportation Appropriations Still Stalled

With the current expiration date on short term federal surface transportation funding of May 31, 2015 rapidly approaching, state and local governments are once again facing the prospect of stalled road, bridge, waterway and rail construction projects while Congress attempts to find a new source of funding for long term infrastructure upkeep. Lagging revenues from the motor fuel tax need to be augmented with higher rates or new sources of money, and meanwhile the Obama administration’s $478 billion, six year “Grow America” appropriation bill remains stalled in Congressional committees on Capitol Hill.

Vice President Biden’s speech Monday to kick off Infrastructure Week notwithstanding, it seems highly unlikely there will be any Congressional action on long term federal funding for surface transportation projects at any time soon. Short term extensions of the National Highway Trust Fund appropriations will most likely continue until after our next presidential election.
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