Spinning our Wheels

Spinning our Wheels is a commuting blog about the challenges of getting around Atlanta by car, bus, MARTA, bicycles and on foot written by transportation reporter David Wickert

U.S. Senate leaders announce agreement on 6-year highway bill

"After months of discussion and a lot of cooperation from chairmen and ranking members, and staffs and members from both sides of the aisle, I’m happy to announce that Sen. Boxer and I have an agreement for a multi-year, bipartisan highway bill."

That announcement came today from U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on the Senate floor regarding the bipartisan Drive Act.

The six-year bill has three years of guaranteed funding for the highway trust fund, which is on a crash course to insolvency after July 31 (when the current short-term funding extension expires).

Just last week, the U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx warned Georgia transportation officials that the federal government won't be able to meet its financial obligations to states after Aug. 1.

A two-month extension that passed at the end of May was the 13th in a series of short-term extensions of transportation funding authority since 2009.

About 100 projects totaling $447 million are on hold in Georgia this year due to the federal funding uncertainty.

The Senate is expected to vote on the bill this week. See the full press release here.

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