With all the recent hubbub about the impending default of the Highway Trust Fund there has been a bill that made it through the various House Committees and just recently exited the rules committee for a floor vote soon. It’s only a short term funding bill, but at least it’s something.
During its time in the Rules Committee, Georgia’s own Tom Graves was able to get an amendment to the bill in the spirit of his Transportation Empowerment Act.
The amendment itself adds a new section of things that Congress finds. It doesn’t have any substantive impact on the short term funding plan. But what it does do is set the tone for further discussion about how we fund transportation projects going forward.
Georgia may not have any representation on the Transportation Committees in either Chamber, but that’s not keeping Rep Tom Graves from having some effect. Bravo Zulu.
One thing I’m very curious about is did the White House endorse the House Republican plan before or after the amendment was approved?
Here’s the full text.
AMENDMENT TO H.R. 5021, AS REPORTED
OFFERED BY MR. GRAVES OF GEORGIA
At the end of section 1, insert the following (and
conform the table of contents accordingly):
1 SEC. 2. FINDINGS.
2 Congress finds that—
3 (1) the existing Highway Trust Fund system is
4 unsustainable and unable to meet our Nation’s 21st
5 century transportation needs;
6 (2) MAP-21 included important reforms that
7 must be built upon in the next reauthorization bill
8 to increase the efficient and effective utilization of
9 Federal funding;
10 (3) these reforms should include the elimination
11 of duplicative Federal regulations and increase the
12 authority and responsibility of the States to safely
13 and efficiently build, operate, and fund transport-
14 tation systems that best serve the needs of their citi-
15 zens, including the ability of each State to imple-
16 ment innovative solutions, while also maintaining the
17 appropriate Federal role in transportation; and
1 (4) Congress should enact and the President
2 should sign a surface transportation reauthorization
3 and reform bill prior to the expiration of this Act.