Lawmakers scheduled to meet on transportation bill

A day after House Republicans blocked the surface transportation bill, lawmakers were scheduled to meet on Wednesday to discuss a plan to move the bill forward.

According to the American Public Transportation Association there is apparently renewed discussion about eliminating funding for public transportation from motor fuel tax revenues are now deposited into the Mass Transit Account of the Highway Trust Fund and dedicated to public transportation programs.

APTA CEO Michael Melaniphy has supported the bipartisan amendment that would restore the Mass Transit Account of the Highway Trust Fund and the 2.86 cents of motor fuels excise tax revenues currently dedicated to public transportation programs.

“It would eliminate the proposed Alternative Transportation Account, and provide for the trust fund to continue to invest in both highways and public transportation, Melaniphy said.”

Melaniphy says this makes it virtually impossible for public transit agencies to develop reliable long-term capital plans, and it could leave the future of the public transit program in peril and it would also stunt American job and economic growth.

Early Wednesday, APTA members were urged to call House Republicans who represent their communities and say they oppose eliminating dedicated funding from motor fuels taxes for public transportation.