House slow to respond on funding level

News ARTBA July 08, 2004
Printer-friendly version





At a June 7 meeting of the House-Senate conference committee charged with finalizing legislation to reauthorize TEA-21, House T

At a June 7 meeting of the House-Senate conference committee charged with finalizing legislation to reauthorize TEA-21, House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman Don Young (R-Alaska) told conferees the House was not prepared "at this time" to respond to the Senate's June 23 offer to fund the reauthorization bill at the Senate-passed $318 billion level. Young did say the House would respond in the near future.


According to the American Road & Transportation Builders Association, it is unclear how the House will respond, but several scenarios are possible: urge the Senate to accept the House highway bill authorization level of $284 billion; develop a funding a funding package somewhere between the levels contained in the House and Senate measures; or accept the Senate offer.


Accepting the Senate's funding level at this early state is probably the least likely response. The House Republican leadership continues to say they want to produce a bill President Bush would sign.


A number of Senators criticized the House's lack of a response and reminded House conferees that time is running short to complete negotiations on a multi-year reauthorization measure this legislative year. House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Bill Thomas (R-Calif.) again told conferees that to get a highway bill enacted the Bush Administration's position needs to be taken into account.


Overlay Init