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U.S. Senate Committee Releases Federal Transportation Reauthorization Proposal

May 13, 2014
Late Monday night the U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) leadership released a much awaited proposal. Initial analysis indicates the six-year proposal maintains current budget levels with indexing for inflation.
The bill is scheduled to be marked up in a Senate EPW hearing on Thursday, May 15. This will be the first of many hearings on the proposal. The largest anticipated hurdle for the reauthorization is how to pay for the program, as the Highway Trust Fund is expected to run out of money this summer. 
This release follows the unveiling of a proposal from the President’s Administration, the GROW AMERICA Act, on April 29. That plan outlined a four-year, $302 billion proposal that would rely on the President’s proposed business tax reforms for full funding. The GROW AMERICA Act is not expected to move forward as a whole package, but may influence Congress as they negotiate their own proposals. 

Take Action for Transportation

2014 promises to be a critical year for federal transportation funding. The current federal surface transportation program, MAP-21, will expire on Sept. 30, 2014. Before then, the Highway Trust Fund, which funds the roads and bridges we use every day, is expected to reach a shortfall this summer.

As Congress debates how to best address these issues, the National League of Cities (NLC) is urging cities to be a part of the debate. Without a strong voice from local government, the risk is gridlock or a transportation bill that neglects the important role local governments play in creating a strong national transportation network.

NLC is calling on Congress to pass a new surface transportation program that adequately funds our nation's transportation needs, takes a smart approach to all forms of transportation, includes a strong role for local governments in the project selection process, and provides local governments with the certainty they need for planning and funding transportation projects.

The time is now for to show the California congressional delegation the practical and economic value that transportation has in your community, and why a strong transportation program is so important. Here are a few ways NLC suggests to take action to show the impact of transportation on the economic development and wellbeing of your city:
Background Materials
Additional information will be released in the coming weeks. The League will continue to monitor the progress of the reauthorization and status of the Highway Trust Fund.

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