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AASHTO Journal

Senate Finance & Banking Panels to Consider Reauthorization Next Week
The last two Senate committees whose approvals are necessary before a surface transportation reauthorization package can be called up on the floor will act next week, Senate Environment and Public Works Committee Chairwoman Barbara Boxer, D-California, said during a press conference Thursday.

Both the Senate Finance Committee and the Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee will meet next week to mark up the revenue and transit components of the two-year, $109 billion legislation, Boxer said. The Finance Committee must identify $12 billion in revenue sources to pay for the bill's cost beyond what the Highway Trust Fund is projected to be able to cover.

Boxer's committee has already approved the highway portions of the bill, "Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century." (see Nov. 10 AASHTO Journal story). The Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee has passed the highway safety and transportation research pieces (see Dec. 16 AASHTO Journal story).

The current surface transportation authorization extension is set to expire on March 31.

A video of Boxer's nine-minute press conference is available on YouTube at bit.ly/Boxer012612.

Three House of Representatives committees will mark up next week a five-year, $260 billion highway and transit reauthorization bill. (see related story) Also in the news this week, more than 1,000 organizations sent a letter to Congress urging prompt action on a highway and transit reauthorization bill, and the Americans for Transportation Mobility coalition announced it will launch an advertising campaign in February in support of such action. (see related story)

1/27/2012
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