Transportation Bill Passes Just in Time
Congress passed a transportation bill crafted by Senators Barbara Boxer and James Inhofe of Oklahoma just hours before the program expired. The bill sustains current financing for the next 27 months at a cost of $120 billion.
Funding for the bill comes from the Highway Transportation Fund, depending solely on an 18.4 cents tax per gallon that has remained at the same level since 1993. The fund provides $40 billion annually for the program–falling short of the $50 billion needed yearly to maintain California’s highways.
The bill provides a short-term solution to the nation’s ongoing transportation infrastructure needs. In years past, the national transportation bill has been a bi-partisan effort, garnering support from both sides of the political aisle. But the bi-partisan support has withered, making it nearly impossible to pass a longer-term transportation blueprint for the country.