In late June Congress approved a 27-month surface transportation reauthorization bill, which was signed into law by President Obama last week. The plan, titled, Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21), was developed by a joint Congressional committee and was approved by the House and Senate just as the current transportation law was set to expire at the end of June. The extension, which passed the House 421-4 and the Senate by voice vote, will allow the nation’s critical transportation projects and programs to continue uninterrupted.
MAP-21 provides funding for federal highway programs through 2014 at current levels (with a minor adjustment for inflation). The legislation also consolidates various federal highway programs to better align funding to national transportation strategy and goals, and provide more resources to states and metropolitan areas to directly address their most critical transportation needs.
The agreement comes finally after a Congressional stalemate over issues such as highway funding, spending limits, and state and local resources. This latest authorization totals $118 billion and will expire on October 1, 2014.