The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee voted this week to support a six year federal transportation bill, the Surface Transportation Reauthorization and Reform – STTR – Act of 2015 (H.R. 3763), which has provisions that are seen as being very favorable to local governments – similar to that of the DRIVE Act passed by the Senate prior this summer. This includes incremental growth in local government funding under the Surface Transportation Program and preserving local authority to allocate funding for multi modal transportation networks under the proposed STP Set Aside. One major difference however, is that the House proposal does not provide for a funding stream for the nearly insolvent Highway Trust Fund, whereas the Senate plan did have three years of funding proposed. But this step is seen as important and positive for getting a long term transportation plan on the books soon. While there may be another short term extension before the House and Senate can resolve their proposals and agree on how to fund them – the hope is that this deal can be in place by the holidays.
Summer Minnick is the Director of External Relations and Federal Affairs. She can be reached at 517-908-0301 or [email protected].