Mica "Pretty Confident" Highway Funds Won't Be Diverted

Rep. John Mica is "Pretty Confident" Highway Trust Fund Dollars Won't Be Diverted from Road Construction

Many voices in the transportation industry have warned that a January 5 change in House rules could jeopardize the flow of money to state highway projects from the federal trust fund. But Rep. John Mica (R-Fla.), who become chairman of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee last week, said "I feel pretty confident" in the assurances he has received in talks with House leaders, particularly Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) and in a brief but formal exchange he had on the House floor with Rep. David Dreier (R-Calif.), who chairs the Rules Committee.

"Through a colloquy that I did on the floor with David Dreier," Mica told The Journal of Commerce, "we got a pretty good clarification that the funds would still be handled within the trust fund in the same manner, and that they would only be used for highway purposes."

The rule change dropped a guaranteed link the House previously used to distribute fuel tax receipts in line with spending commitments in multi-year surface transportation laws. (More at the Journal of Commerce online . . . )