Legislators today proposed a stop-gap fix as funding of the 2005 SAFTEA-LU program was set to expire next week.
Instead of allowing a “whole system collapse” of the nation’s transportation infrastructure funding model, the House Committee on Transportation introduced a three-month extension, a measure that fell 15 months short of a recommendation made earlier this summer by the White House.
If passed on the full House floor, the U.S. Department of Transportation would pro-rate fiscal year 2009 funding levels, more than $24 billion, for the first three months of the new fiscal year, which begins Oct. 1. The committee said these funds would enable state and local governments to continue to receive the capital necessary to continue existing programs and projects.
Editor's update 9/24/09: The House passed its version on Wednesday. It's now in the hands of the Senate, where many members disagree with the three-month extension and instead favor an 18-month extension as Congress fights on health care reform, climate change and other appropriations issues.