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Rail News Home Rail Industry Trends

1/24/2008



Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

House bill proposes transportation funding for trade corridors


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Yesterday, U.S. Reps. Ken Calvert (R-Calif.) and Jesse Jackson Jr. (D-Ill.) introduced Our Nation's Trade Infrastructure, Mobility and Efficiency Act, or the ON TIME Act (H.R. 5102), which proposes to expedite the movement of goods in trade corridors and provide transportation funding to local communities impacted by trade.

The bill would create a freight fee based on goods value and dedicate funds from a port to local National Trade Gateway Corridors, targeted areas around the more than 300 points of entry across the United States, including ports, airports and border crossings. The corridors — which would include routes up to 300 miles from points of entry — would be defined by the U.S. Department of Transportation in consultation with the U.S. Department of Commerce.

Funds generated by the fees would be targeted at projects designed to relieve transportation choke points and bottlenecks, and be distributed on an 80/20 matching basis. Projects eligible to receive funding include grade separations, publicly owned intermodal freight transfer facilities, freeway expansions and dedicated truck lanes located within a National Trade Gateway Corridor.

"Anyone stuck behind a rail crossing or crawling along our jammed freeways knows commuters in southern California are severely impacted by the overwhelming volume of goods that pass through the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach," said Calvert in a prepared statement. "The same transportation problems we see in southern California are happening at key trade gateways across the country."


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