Highway Trust Fund patch signed by President

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highway roadPresident Barack Obama signed into law May 29 the Highway and Transportation Funding Act of 2015, extending funding for the Highway Trust Fund for 60 days through the end of July.

The previous extension, passed last summer, extended funding from Oct. 1, 2014, through May 31, 2015.

This is Congress’ 33rd stopgap surface transportation measure in a decade despite introduction of several long-term bills.

President Obama signed the patch into law after the Senate approved continuing the HTF by voice vote and the House passed the bill 387-35 earlier in May.

Lawmakers have not approved a long-term funding bill since the last one became law in 2005, followed by passage of a two-year bill in 2012. Obama said this “continual pattern of uncertainty” has caused states to cancel or delay projects during peak construction season.

On May 19, Oregon Rep. Peter DeFazio and 19 other House transportation committee Democrats filed the Grow America Act, a six-year, $478 billion surface transportation reauthorization plan sent to Congress earlier this year by President Obama and DOT Secretary Anthony Foxx.

Congress will have until July 31 to pass a long-term funding solution for the Highway Trust Fund before this extension expires.