Tomorrow marks the 750th day that Congress has failed to pass a highway bill. The last major highway bill expired on September 30, 2009. Both the House and Senate are working on a new bill to reform the current programs and keep our roads from crumbling, but wouldn't it be nice if a long-term solution was passed sooner rather than later?
The latest on the highway bill … Seeking to avoid another short-term extension of federal transportation programs when the current (and eighth short-term extension) expires next March, House and Senate transportation leaders are working hard to gain sufficient support to move their respective transportation proposals.
House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman John Mica (R-Fla.) and Senate Environment and Public Works Committee Chairman Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) are both talking to their colleagues to find additional revenues to fund a long-term transportation program. This summer, Mica and Boxer offered outlines of long-term legislation to extend federal transportation programs, but have not been able to move further with their legislative proposals.
Last week, Mica opened the House Transportation hearing on Highways and Transit hearing by declaring infrastructure bank DOA in the House.
We all know that our roads are crumbling and sending our nation slowly down the list of infrastructure economic competitiveness (we are now 15th in the world). But we have to watch as our politicians do what they do best – which is nothing.
The American Highway Users Alliance - a nonprofit advocacy organization serving as the united voice of the transportation community promoting safe, uncongested highways and enhanced freedom of mobility – reminds of the 750-day anniversary by tracking each day that slips by without a bill on its website. It also gives us some ways we can help advocate for a speedier passage of the highway bill.
Check out the website here and let's all do our part to get this bill passed sooner.