Get Your Popcorn for Friday’s Headlines

  • In the latest infrastructure bill drama, President Biden is under pressure to get legislation passed before a climate summit in Scotland later this month (The Hill). Meanwhile, recalcitrant Democratic Sen. Kyrsten Sinama said she won’t vote on the reconciliation bill, which is expected to include more funding for transit, until the House votes on the bipartisan bill (Reuters), and West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin’s price for supporting a bill that addresses climate change might be funding for coal and gas power plants (Politico). Speaker Nancy Pelosi is considering big cuts to the former (CNBC), which has angered the progressive caucus (New York Post).
  • Georgia Sen. Jon Ossoff is pushing for $10 billion in the reconciliation bill to fund high-speed rail between Atlanta and Charlotte. (Athens Banner-Herald)
  • University of Georgia researchers have invented a plant-based jet fuel that could reduce emissions by 68 percent.
  • Tesla owners are driving around aimlessly trying to get access to the company’s “Full Self-Driving Mode.” (Jalopnik)
  • Philadelphia’s $450 million in federal COVID transit funding is running out, and some advocates want to replace it with congestion pricing. (NBC 10)
  • A Massachusetts state senator outlines how he’ll push for more transit funding in the state’s 2022 budget. (Commonwealth)
  • After adding second cars to light rail lines anticipating that ridership would recover, the Pittsburgh Port Authority is going back to single cars. (Post-Gazette)
  • A study found that a new Amtrak route through Montana could generate $271 million in economic benefits. (Missoulian)
  • A D.C. Metro train derailment Tuesday may have been caused by a stuck holding brake. (Washington Post)
  • San Diego and Long Beach both placed orders for new electric buses. (Green Car Congress)
  • Grand Rapids is buying 35 new bus shelters for transit stops. (Fox 17)
  • Two-thirds of travelers between Rome and Milan are now taking the 400-mile trip on high-speed rail rather than flying. (CNN)

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Happy 2011! May this year bring peace, harmony, and a six-year transportation reauthorization. The best part about 2011 is that it’s not 2010. Last year was a tough one at the federal level: constant extensions of both the transportation bill and the general budget, no progress on an adequate funding source for infrastructure investment, and […]