Heartening note in a Reuters report that House Republicans, especially House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee chairman John Mica, may be willing and able to work on finding enough funding for a new surface transportation bill to keep it functioning at current levels.
You’ll recall that Mica and fellow committee Republicans had presented a proposal that came in way lower that the current SAFETEA-LU levels, citing new House rules that prevent spending more than you raise. That proposal said that all that could be spent was what was in the Highway Trust Fund, and that amount was not only short of current levels but nowhere near enough to make a new bill anything but something to paper over the increasing wide cracks in our transportation infrastructure.
Now a report that House Republicans think that maybe they can find more. Where have you guys been?
On a cautionary note, the story says Mica “recently received a commitment from leadership to help identify new sources of funding…” We need to know how to define this phrase because it could just mean looking at the same old same old that we know won’t work short term. But you never know.
Check out the Reuters story on the possibility that we may be getting something like bipartisanship emerging here. Too early to tell, but its a good sign and we need those.