Senate vote: SAFETEA-LU extended to March 4

The Senate voted 79-16 on Dec. 21 to temporarily extend federal highway and transit programs as well as appropriations for the U.S. Department of Transportation and other government agencies until March 4, according to a report from the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO).

According to the report, the House of Representatives is expected to concur and send the bill to President Barack Obama for his signature.

Funding for the federal government under the current continuing resolution expires Dec. 21, and temporary authorization for highway and transit programs is set to expire on Dec. 31.

The “stopgap measure” would be the sixth short-term extension of the 2005 SAFETEA-LU surface transportation authorization law, which originally expired on Sept. 30, 2009, according to AASHTO.

The previous surface transportation bill, ISTEA, was extended 12 times before SAFETEA-LU was signed into law.