September 16, 2009
RE: Federal Update Road and Rail Funding
Here is an update on Congressional action on Federal Transportation policy. The current program, SAFETEA-LU, is set to expire on September 30th. (See our letter of August 6 for details on the debate http://www.njslom.org/ml080609-ftf.html.) House Highway and Transit Subcommittee Chair Pete DeFazio has indicated support for a short term extension. But Transportation Committee Chair Jim Oberstar publicly continues to remain adamant that a multi-year reform bill must be passed this year. There are rumors that the Committee will have some sort of public event on the bill in the next few days, although no further formal action can be taken on the Oberstar proposal without adding a revenue title, which is not possible without action of the House Ways and Means Committee.
The Senate and the Administration continue to support a 12 to 18 month extension, and to delay the major policy debates until 2010. And no one, it seems, is anxious to offer long-term funding alternatives.
We will do our best to keep you posted. If you have any questions, contact Jon Moran at 609-695-3481, ext. 121.
Very truly yours,
William G. Dressel, Jr.