House clears 6-month highway funding patch

| July 16, 2014

highway construction workAn $11 billion highway funding plan passed the House on Tuesday and would patch the Highway Trust Fund for six months, but the bill does nothing to address the systemic shortfall in federal transportation and infrastructure funding. 

The bill cleared by a wide margin, 367 to 55, boding well for its prospects in the Senate, which has a version of the bill in the works, too. 

Related

With highway money running out, DOT warns states of project funding cuts

Department of Transportation head Anthony Foxx sent a letter to states July 1 telling them the DOT will have to start restricting reimbursement payments to states starting Aug. 1, unless Congress can act to shore up Highway Trust Fund cash flow before that date.

The Department of Transportation sent letters to states earlier this month saying beginning Aug. 1, it would start restricting money for highway funding projects, including those already in the works. The DOT warned that barring Congressional action, thousands of jobs would be at stake. 

And as summer is road-building season, the White House has said it supports the bill’s “continuity of funding,” but President Obama also said Tuesday the measure is Congress’ way of “kicking the can down the road” on highway funding. 

Several influential conservative groups also came out against the bill. Both the Club for Growth and Heritage Action added the vote to their legislative scorecards, objecting to the use long-term accounting gimmicks to pay for the short-term repair of a broken program.

House Speaker John Behner, however, said the bill “is good news” for both construction workers and for highway users and urged the Senate to pass the bill, too. 

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  • William McKelvie

    Another screaming of another shortage? Funny funny stuff right there. How’s about you bring up the standards of the roadways, then they might just possibly might quit falling apart. Today’s roadways are being built on what year standards? How heavy are cars and trucks now. And what about all those who consistently run over and way over the axle tolerances? Yeah that does nothing in the ways of deterioration to the roads at all, right? Not one bit. More smoke and mirrors from the current administration, surprise surprise.