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Rail News Home Federal Legislation & Regulation

10/5/2011



Rail News: Federal Legislation & Regulation

Mica seeks six-year surface transportation reauthorization bill at current funding levels, spokesman says


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House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman John Mica (R-Fla.) is preparing a six-year surface transportation reauthorization bill that would drop a previously proposed 30 percent cut in funding.

Mica “is looking for ways to responsibly increase revenue to maintain our surface transportation infrastructure,” Mica spokesman Justin Harclerode said in a telephone interview yesterday.

What those additional sources of revenue might be have not yet been determined, although one option that remains off the table is an increase in the federal gas tax, Harclerode said.

“We’re still looking at our options,” he said. “The congressman still opposes increasing the gas tax. That’s the only parameter right now.”

News that Mica and House Republicans are open to maintaining funding for public transportation comes as a relief to many transportation industry organizations.

Earlier this summer, several public transportation organizations — including the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) — voiced concerns after House proposals called for slashing funding for transportation systems and infrastructure.  An APTA analysis found that, if passed, such measures would result in the loss of 620,000 public and private sector jobs and elimination of $17.2 billion worth of transportation projects during the six-year period.

— Julie Sneider

 


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