The transportation conference committee working on a new authorization continues to meet, with staff behind the scenes working on several issues in the hopes of reaching a compromise before the current extension expires on June 30th.
The League and its national partners are asking members to “Call-In” on Wednesday, May 23rd to congressional offices. Recall that Michigan Congressmen Dave Camp and Fred Upton are key members of the conference committee.
Please take a moment on May 23rd and call your congressional office in Washington DC to tell them of the need for a long term solution that will help to bring certainity to decisions being made at the local level on transportation and infrastructure projects. Urge them to:
· Support current law to maintain the current threshold of 50,000 in population for remaining a Metropolitan Planning Organization and the current share of funding for metropolitan areas at 62.5 percent rather than the 50 percent that is in the Senate bill;
· Adopt a provision in the Senate bill that would provide a 15 percent share of funding for local bridges from the overall funding for states; and
· Support funding for public transit as well as “additional activities” in the Senate bill that would help revitalize Main Streets, make streets safer for walkers and bicyclists, and allow local governments direct access for communities to these funds.
Support a bipartisan agreement on a long-term transportation bill that supports local government authority on matters such as environmental regulation and historic preservation;
Arnold Weinfeld is Director of Strategic Initiatives and Federal Affairs for the Michigan Municipal League. He can be reached at 517-908-0304 or by e-mail.