Transportation Advocates: Highway Bill Extension Likely
With the clock ticking toward expiration of the FAST Act on September 30th, ACPA and other transportation groups are advising that a highway and transit program extension is likely.
At a virtual meeting last week, the Transportation Construction Coalition* discussed how Congress has extended the surface transportation program more than a dozen times since 2009.
“Noting past negative market and economic impacts of extension-related flat funding levels, coupled with new uncertainty about the timeline for the nation’s post-coronavirus economic recovery, ARTBA raised serious concerns about a status quo approach,” the association reported. “ARTBA also reminded the staff that increased funding in an extension will require additional Highway Trust Fund (HTF) resources.”
The TCC allies reached consensus on the necessary extension ingredients, while also continuing to advocate for additional resources for state departments of transportation and public transportation agencies. The following day, the Americans for Transportation Mobility (ATM) coalition agreed to join with the TCC to advocate jointly on these issues in a meeting with top House and Senate transportation committee staff.
Although the extension is a high priority, ACPA and other transportation construction advocates remain firmly committed to a long-term, well-funded highway bill; a durable solution to the ongoing Highway Trust Fund issue; and the approval of highway funding in the next COVID-19 relief and recovery package.
The Transportation Construction Coalition is a partnership of 31 national associations and construction unions representing hundreds of thousands of individuals with a direct market interest in federal transportation programs. TCC is comprised of the American Coal Ash Association; American Concrete Pavement Association; American Concrete Pipe Association; American Iron & Steel Institute; American Road & Transportation Builders Association; American Society of Civil Engineers; American Subcontractors Association; American Traffic Safety Services Association; Asphalt Emulsion Manufacturers Association; Asphalt Recycling and Reclaiming Association; Associated Equipment Distributors; Associated General Contractors of America; American Council of Engineering Companies; Association of Equipment Manufacturers; Concrete Reinforcing Steel Institute; International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental and Reinforcing Iron; International Slurry Surfacing Association; International Union of Operating Engineers; Laborers’ International Union of North America; Laborers-Employers Cooperation & Education Trust; National Asphalt Pavement Association; National Association of Surety Bond Producers; National Electrical Contractors Association; National Ready Mixed Concrete Association; National Steel Bridge Alliance; National Stone, Sand & Gravel Association; National Utility Contractors Association; Portland Cement Association; Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institute; The Road Information Program; and the United Brotherhood of Carpenters & Joiners of America.
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