High Stakes for a Short-Term Fix and a Long-Term Solution -
While Congress has four months until the current surface transportation authorization, MAP-21, is due to expire, the Highway Trust Fund could become completely insolvent by late August. More dire, some projections forecast less than one month until the Highway Trust dips below the critically low level of $4 billion. If Congress does not act, construction projects could be stopped this summer in the critical period before midterm elections.
Consensus is emerging between Democrats and Republicans that a short-term extension of transportation policy will be needed to keep infrastructure projects on pace, but there is not yet agreement on how to finance either short-term legislation, which would require roughly $18 billion to fund the Highway Trust Fund through the end of FY15, or a longer-term reauthorization bill.
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