House rolls out six-year reauthorization proposal
For commentary from Better Roads Editor-in-Chief John Latta on both proposals, see his Roadologist blog post “Dualing Proposals.”
“This is an important first step in implementing a six-year highway plan that will dramatically improve the efficiency and safety of the Nation’s transportation system and stimulate the economy by creating thousands of long-term jobs,” said Highways and Transit Subcommittee Chairman John J. Duncan, Jr. (R-Tenn.). “The plan we are laying out today takes away the red tape and streamlines a process that has become entangled with bureaucracy. I am looking forward to advancing a bill through the full Congress.”
Railroads, Pipelines and Hazardous Materials Subcommittee Chairman Bill Shuster (R-Pa.) says that the proposal is “a new direction in the transportation reauthorization bill is an important step in the right direction for our nation. This is a bold vision for a reauthorization that focuses on multiple modes, including rail and hazardous materials transportation as well as our highway system. We can do this with America’s rail system at the same time we improve our highways.”
Coast Guard & Maritime Transportation Subcommittee Chairman Frank LoBiondo (R-N.J.) is applauding the Committee “for recognizing the critical role the maritime industry plays in the nation’s economy, global commerce and job creation.”
LoBiondo notes that the important role it plays makes it appropriate to include a maritime title in for the first time in the proposed multi-year legislation.
“It is our shared goal to improve coordination between agencies and streamline the bureaucratic process to increase efficiency of our marine transportation system,” he said.
While the U.S. economy is fueled by maritime commerce and millions of Americans depend on jobs created by imports, exports, and the commercial shipping industry, Water Resources and Environment Subcommittee Chairman Bob Gibbs (R-Ohio) says government red tape has “stifled the flow of commerce and our ability to effectively build and maintain our maritime infrastructure.” Gibbs says the July 6 proposal “cuts through the bureaucratic red tape, streamlines project delivery, eliminates double taxation on shippers, enhances our ports and waterways, and strengthens our economic foundation to help us to compete globally. These reforms are critical as we work to grow our economy and create jobs.”
Highways and Transit Subcommittee Vice-Chair Richard Hanna (R-N.Y.) says that one of the most important aspects of this proposal is that it provides predictability for states and public transit agencies to plan for multi-year projects.
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