Surface Transportation Reauthorization
The current surface transportation law, the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act (FAST Act), expires September 30, 2020. The FAST Act authorized $305 billion over five years, the first long-term bill since 2005. Congressional infrastructure committees on both sides of the Capitol are drafting reauthorization bills, with the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee leading the way. The EPW Committee approved a 5-year, $287 billion highway bill in July 2019. The bill, S. 2302, the America’s Transportation Infrastructure Act (ATIA) of 2019 was approved unanimously by the committee. The largest increase would come in the first year with a 17% jump over the last year of the FAST Act, and then grow at about 2% for the next four years. The bill is not paid for and estimates are that it would need an additional $83 billion in revenue over current receipts into the Highway Trust Fund (HTF). Once the public transportation and motor carrier safety titles are completed the total cost of the bill would again add to the total costs of the bill. The other Senate Committees (Banking -transit, Commerce-motor carrier and safety, and Finance-revenue) have not acted yet. The House T&I Committee hopes to release a bill before the summer of 2020.
Through the heard work of the AMPO policy committee and Board reauthorization requests were finalized and delivered to the EPW Committee ahead of the April 2019 deadline. Since this submission AMPO continues to engage both Hose and Senate Committee staffs as well as Congressional member offices. Here are the highlights of AMPO’s requests to Congress:
- Fix the Highway Trust Fund & Provide A Long-Term Revenue Solution for The Federal Share of Transportation
- Increase Federal Investment in Transportation
- Increase Planning Funds for Metropolitan Planning to Meet Federal Planning Requirements
- Allocate STBGP Funds to All MPOs Regardless of Population
- Restore the Share of STBGP Apportionment to Local Jurisdictions (62.5%)
- Improve Project Selection Authority and Local Governance on MPO Boards
- Support Continued Development of Multi-Modal National Freight Network with Dedicated Funding
- Empower High-Performing MPOs With Increased Responsibilities, Supporting Local Control and Decision-Making.