The Senate Passes its Transportation Bill. Your Move, House.

19 Mar

Washington’s transportation bill saga continues. After months of heated debate, a lack of support for the House Transportation Bill has Speaker John Boehner looking for alternatives — and it looks like the options are running out. Conservative Republicans are unwilling to lend support to previous spending bills floated by the Obama administration and the Senate, and their proposed budget has faced opposition from liberal and conservative groups alike.

The House had punted on the issue, waiting for the Senate to release a revised version of the bill before drafting their alternative. On Wednesday, the Senate passed a bill that won broad support, passing by a 74-22 margin. It maintains the current level of funding for highway and transit projects for two years and expands a federal loan program for transit projects.

Funding for road and rail construction projects expires on March 31st. Any delay beyond that date could result in as many as 1.8 million layoffs in the construction industry, an untenable position for leaders in Washington.

Despite this looming deadline, a solution remains elusive. With the Senate’s bill, we’re one step closer. Still, Americans continue to wait for a new, innovative transportation plan that will upgrade our aging infrastructure.

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