Barack Obama photo

Statement of Administration Policy: H.R. 3038 - Highway and Transportation Funding Act of 2015, Part II

July 15, 2015


STATEMENT OF ADMINISTRATION POLICY

(House)

(Rep. Ryan, R-WI, and Rep. Shuster, R-PA)

With surface transportation authorization expiring at the end of July, the unfortunate reality is that, due to inaction, Congress will need to pass a short-term extension of these authorities to keep Federal funding for the Nation's surface transportation system flowing. While the country cannot continue to rely on short-term patches as an approach to funding the Nation's infrastructure, the Administration supports passage of H.R. 3038 to give the House and Senate the necessary time to complete work on a long-term bill this year that increases investment to meet the Nation's infrastructure needs.

In recent decades, Congress routinely passed six-year surface transportation bills, providing much needed certainty to State and local governments. In comparison, the current series of short-term patches creates significant uncertainty that makes it more difficult to plan and implement long-term investments. At the same time, Congress has failed to increase investment in the Nation's aging surface transportation infrastructure, leaving State and local governments without the resources they need to meet the demands of a growing economy and population.

In today's economy, to compete the Nation must have a first-class transportation system that attracts first-class jobs and takes American businesses' goods all across the world. Such a system cannot be achieved without a long-term bill with increased levels of investment. That is why the President has proposed the GROW AMERICA Act, which would provide robust funding for all modes of surface transportation, create jobs, streamline project approval processes, and implement innovative transportation policies to make better use of taxpayer dollars.

The Administration will not support continued failure to make the investments the Nation needs. The Administration expects that Congress will use this five-month extension to pass a multi-year bill with significant increases in investment to address the system's maintenance and repair deficit, enhance safety, and lay the foundations for future growth in critical areas like freight movement. The Administration looks forward to working with both houses of Congress to pass such a bill before the end of 2015.

Barack Obama, Statement of Administration Policy: H.R. 3038 - Highway and Transportation Funding Act of 2015, Part II Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/310783