The Consequences of Political Foot-Dragging

If SAFETEA-LU isn't extended on time, over 5,000 transit grants could be at risk. Source: FTA

The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee is meeting tomorrow to discuss a four-month extension to the current transportation bill, SAFETEA-LU. The map above is from a short but powerful document the Federal Transit Administration put out this week explaining “The Impacts of Failing to Extend Surface Transportation Funding” [PDF]. How much transit work would grind to a halt in your state without an extension?

In addition to the 5,600 transit grants, covering both capital projects and operations, a failure to extend SAFETEA-LU on time would jeopardize 134,936 active highway projects and 847,294 jobs, according to the FTA.

  • Robert

    I thought this post was going to go something like:

    If the Obama Administration had focused on transportation rather than passing a health care bill that will be gutted the next time a Republican becomes president, the transportation policy for the next 5-6 years would have been set. That policy, would have looked like it was written by bike/ped advocates, because it was. Jim Oberstar was the House Chair of the Transportation Com.

    Can you imagine?

    -a nationwide Complete Streets policy
    -stronger Safe Routes to School
    50 communities recieving $50,000,000 a piece to build a non-motorized network

    Instead, we will now have a bill that takes us back twenty years. This may honestly be the biggest mistake that the Obama Administration made.

  • I think  Obama Administration should pay more attention to the ransportation

  • Clutch J

    @ Robert

    Health care policy was a good choice. It’s a more important public policy matter for the nation.

    While transportation reform can flourish at the local and regional levels, health care can only be resolved at the national level. A shrinking of the federal transportation program is far from the worst possible result for the bike-ped community.

    Note: Oberstar’s proposal did not include the the 50x$50M, and its complete streets policy was pretty weak.


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