U.S. Senators John Barrasso (R-WY), Tom Carper (D-DE), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), and Ben Cardin (D-MD) released the following statements on the committee’s passage of S. 2302, America’s Transportation Infrastructure Act of 2019.
The $287 billion infrastructure bill won quick approval by a Senate panel today with provisions to speed up federal approvals for major highway projects and address the impact of global warming on roads and bridges.
The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee advanced the “America’s Transportation Infrastructure Act” after adopting amendments.
- Vote to approve was 21-0.
- Bill would authorize surface transportation programs for five years starting Oct. 1, 2020.
- Climate title includes provisions aimed at ensuring infrastructure is resilient to natural disasters, reducing emissions from transportation, and targeting congestion, among other items.
Barrasso and Carper serve as chairman and ranking member of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works (EPW). Capito and Cardin serve as chairman and ranking member of the EPW Subcommittee on Transportation and Infrastructure.
The American Road and Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA) said its staff had attended multiple briefings with EPW committee staff, who shared some details of the legislation. It includes:
Of the $287 billion in budget authority, 90 percent will be provided to the states via formula;
A new $6 billion bridge program would be funded by a mix of Highway Trust Fund and General Fund revenues;
New climate change and safety incentivization programs;
Additional streamlining provisions, including the codification of “One Federal Decision”, the Trump administration executive order requiring all agencies to work together on a single decision for environmental project reviews;
Resources to build alternative fuel fueling stations along identified corridors;
The EPW committee, which has jurisdiction over most highway programs, is the first in either the House or Senate to move forward on reauthorizing the 2015 FAST Act surface transportation law, which expires Sept. 30, 2020.
We will be keeping an eye on this legislation as our country looks to build upon and improve our infrastructure.