Federal Surface Transportation Reauthorization: The Road Ahead

With the expiry looming of the current federal authorization for US surface transportation funding, the Obama Administration recently submitted a bill to Congress (the “Grow America” Act) proposing a four-year reauthorization and containing several programmatic modifications. The Senate is currently working on a proposed bill (expected to be introduced this week) and a House bill is expected to follow. We summarize below the key elements of Grow America, congressional activity to date relating to a new bill, and specific surface transportation financing options that are likely to be discussed among stakeholders.

The most recent reauthorization of federal funding for US surface transportation, the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (“MAP-21”), which was signed into law by President Obama in July 2012, will expire on September 30th of this year. In addition, the Highway Trust Fund (the “HTF”), the source of most federal funding to the states for highway improvements, is projected by the US Department of Transportation (“US DOT”) to be insolvent by the end of August of this year unless congressional action is taken to avert it.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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