UPDATE: Congress approves Highway Trust Fund stopgap measure
In the 11th hour, Congress approved a short-term extension to keep the Highway Trust Fund solvent through next May. The measure will now go to President Obama’s desk for approval.
Acting before the five-week summer recess, in an 81-13 vote the Senate approved a House measure to provide the Highway Trust Fund with $10.8 billion, according to The Los Angeles Times. Without the stopgap measure, the fund would have been depleted by the end of the month.
Although the trust is now solvent, the short-term solution has satisfied few. National Association of Counties President Riki Hokama said in a statement, “We understand the need for an immediate fix, but counties urge Congress to provide long-term certainty.”
“The time for short-term patches is over. Stopgap measures hinder major transportation investments and jeopardize jobs,” he continued. “There is a significant need for a long-term reinvestment in America.”
To learn more about the issues surrounding the beleaguered Highway Trust Fund, click here. To learn more about counties’ increasing role in funding transportation projects, and why funding the trust is of critical importance to local governments, click here.