The American Bus Association (ABA) – the industry leader advancing North American motorcoach travel and tourism – applauds the introduction of the bipartisan Surface Transportation Reauthorization Act (STRA) of 2021 by the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works Chairman Tom Carper (D-Del.), Ranking Member Shelly Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) and Transportation Subcommittee Chairman Ben Cardin (D-Md.) and Ranking Member Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.).
The STRA sets a new baseline funding level at a historic high of $303.5 billion for Department of Transportation programs for highways, roads, and bridges. This marks an increase of more than 34 percent from the last reauthorization to pass Congress, the FAST Act, in 2015. The Committee clearly understands that improved surface transportation infrastructure is vital to the economy as it recovers from the pandemic.
The bill provides robust funding for highways, increases investments in roadway safety, streamlines provisions to speed up highway projects, and includes flexibility to invest in roadways to create safer and more reliable trips.
“Safety is the number one priority for the motorcoach industry, we applaud this first step in the reauthorization process as the Committee has demonstrated its commitment to safer roads by improving our infrastructure,” said Peter Pantuso, president & CEO of ABA. “Transportation reauthorization has always been a bipartisan undertaking and we hope this year is no different. We encourage Congress and the Administration to work together to robustly fund the surface transportation reauthorization before the Sept. 30 deadline. ABA looks forward to the first step in this process with the Senate EPW Committee mark up of this important legislation on May 26.”