NADO Issues Action Alert on Upcoming House-Senate Conference of Surface Transportation Reauthorization

Posted on: April 21st, 2012 by NADO Admin

SPECIFIC ACTION NEEDED:

Urge your Senators and Representatives to support the House language for state DOT “cooperation” with non-metropolitan local officials in the statewide transportation planning process (including the establishment of Regional Transportation Planning Organizations for areas outside of MPOs), as part of the pending House-Senate conference committee on the federal surface transportation reauthorization bills (H.R. 4348 / S. 1813).

  • Click here to view the complete NADO legislative fact sheet on this issue.

HOUSE-SENATE CONFERENCE COMMITTEE PROCESS: 

Starting the week of April 23, 2012, staff for the various House and Senate transportation committees will begin preparing for the House-Senate conference committee.  Both chambers are also expected to take the formal actions required to initiate the conference committee this week.  Since the House Republican leadership could never secure the floor votes needed to pass the five-year, $260 billion package (H.R. 7) assembled by the Transportation and Infrastructure, Ways and Means, and other related committees, the House is technically using its three-month extension bill (H.R. 4348) as the conference vehicle with the Senate’s two-year, $109 billion measure (S. 1813). The House extension bill includes provisions that would accelerate approval of the Keystone XL Pipeline and steer penalties from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill to Gulf Coast states, as well as some environmental streamlining provisions and other bill language that were part of the multi-year bill (H.R. 7).  However, in reality, the House-Senate negotiators are planning informally to use many of the provisions included in the House’s multi-year bill (H.R. 7) as part of the House-Senate conference deliberations.

Since the 2005 SAFETEA-LU surface transportation law (P.L. 109-59) expired on September 30, 2009, most federal highway, transit, safety and other related programs are now operating under the 9th short-term extension.  The current extension expires on June 30, 2012.

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