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Statement of Administration Policy: H.R. 5205 - Transportation Appropriations Bill, 1987

September 11, 1986


(Sponsor: Whitten (D), Mississippi; Lehman (D), Florida Hatfield (R), Oregon; Andrews (D), North Dakota)

The President's senior advisers will recommend a veto of this bill in its present form. The Senate Committee bill is $4.3 billion over the President's request — an increase of $3.2 billion in budget authority and $1.1 billion in total obligational limitations. While the bill is $25 million below the CBO/OMB average Gradison baseline specified by Gramm-Rudman-Hollings for budget authority, it is about $375 million above that baseline for obligational limitations. Likewise, it is unacceptable to the Administration that the bill bars the Secretary from denying reemployment to fired air traffic controllers "as a class" solely because of participation in an illegal strike. This provision would inappropriately mandate executive branch hiring and would jeopardize the safety of the air traffic control system.

Past economic activity as well as revised economic assumptions point to slower growth and a higher projected deficit than was forecast earlier. In the Administration's opinion, as well as that of the Congressional Budget Office, the Congressional Budget Resolution, including its allocation to the Transportation Appropriations Subcommittee, will be inadequate to avoid the necessity of a Gramm-Rudman-Hollings sequester. The Administration believes Congress should act to cut spending in areas of lower priority in the bill so that a sequester, which would hit high-priority and low-priority areas alike, can be avoided.

In particular, the Administration objects to:

  • an additional $826 million for Urban Mass Transportation Formula Grants;
  • $990 million for Urban Mass Transportation Discretionary Grants;
  • $591 million for Amtrak;
  • $1,030 million increase in total obligations for the Federal-Aid Highway program;
  • $288 million increase in obligation limitations for Airport Improvement program grants; and
  • continued subsidies for payments to air carriers, which are unwarranted.

Click here to access data tables that were attached to this SAP.

Related PDFs

Ronald Reagan, Statement of Administration Policy: H.R. 5205 - Transportation Appropriations Bill, 1987 Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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