ATA to Senate: pass highway bill

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ARLINGTON, Va. — The American Trucking Associations (ATA) is calling on the Senate to follow the lead of the House of Representatives and pass a $10.8 billion bill that would keep the Highway Trust Fund solvent for the next several months.

Adopting a short-term bill will make it easier to pass a long-term transportation measure, sooner rather than later, according to ATA President and CEO Bill Graves.

For that reason, the ATA also supports the efforts of Sens. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) and Tom Carper (D-Del.) to shorten the deadline of the quick-fix bill to Dec. 19 from May 2015, Mr. Graves said

“ATA continues to seek an immediate solution to the impending insolvency of the Highway Trust Fund,” Mr. Graves said in a July 23 press release.

“Moving from one funding crisis to another will force states to cancel or delay even more crucial highway projects,” he said. “The December deadline provides the cushion needed to avert near-term funding interruptions for states and provides ample time for lawmakers to resolve the long-term challenge facing the Trust Fund.”

The Senate is expected to take up the short-term bill this week, amid complaints from transportation stakeholders and the Obama administration about the inability of Congress to agree long-term legislation to fund the nation’s transportation infrastructure needs.

On July 21, Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx and 11 former Secretaries of Transportation sent an open letter to Congress, urging legislators to stop approving short-term transportation bills and pass a multi-year bill that will give states certainly about transportation funding going forward.

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