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A new bill from the U.S. House of Representatives to fund the Department of Transportation through budget year 2022 would help increase the operating budget for federal truck safety programs and ensure the distribution of infrastructure grants across the country.
As part of a draft budget approved by a House panel on July 12, federal transportation and housing programs would receive $ 84.1 billion for the next fiscal year beginning October 1, recognized levels of the year. For USDOT, that would mean an increase of $ 1.9 billion. (Text of the bill.)
House Democratic leaders, who plan to bring the measure to the Chamber’s Chamber this month, have raised concerns about nationwide infrastructure networks. As the Chair of the Budget Committee, Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.) Put it: “For too long the crumbling infrastructure of our nation has held America back. With this bill’s major new investments in transportation, including mass transit and rail, more than 125,000 new housing vouchers, and the modernization of public housing, we’ve made a long overdue investment in the future of American working-class families. “
The bill provides for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s operating budget to be increased slightly. Specifically, the FMCSA funding proposal in the House Bill would include $ 379.5 million for the operating budget and $ 506.2 million for security grants.
In addition, the Federal Highway Administration would receive $ 61.9 billion for programs funded through the Highway Trust Fund account. The funding is intended to improve the safety and long-term profitability of land transport, said the sponsors of the bill.
The bill would also provide $ 18.9 billion to the Federal Aviation Administration, which would be $ 896 million above budget year 2021 levels. The Federal Railroad Administration would receive $ 4.1 billion, an increase of $ 1.3 billion from 2021, and the Federal Transit Administration would receive $ 15.5 billion, an increase of 459 $ 2.7 billion above fiscal 2021 levels. Amtrak would receive $ 2.7 billion, up $ 700 million from fiscal 2021.
For a USDOT program that awards grants for infrastructure projects called Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity or RAISE grants, the homeowners proposed $ 1.2 billion for fiscal 2022. The RAISE grants were formerly known as the BUILD and TIGER grants.
With climate change in mind, the legislation would allocate approximately $ 250 million to emission reduction programs, such as zero-emission buses. The legislation would also fund a myriad of storm resilience programs and research and development projects on new technologies.
“Modernizing our country’s aging infrastructure, including our housing stock, is central to our economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic,” said David Price (DN.C.), Chair of the Transportation and Housing Subcommittee and Urban development and related agencies.
The Chair of the Appropriations Subcommittee, David Price (DN.C.) made introductory remarks. (Home Resources Committee / YouTube)
“This year’s bill to finance transport, housing and urban development focuses on building a fairer future. It promotes housing stability by allocating more funding to rental subsidies, expanding housing vouchers and making public housing safety a priority, ”Price added. “The bill nearly doubles investment in passenger and freight transport and strengthens our commitment to more sustainable travel, while at the same time focusing on climate resistance and protection. The 2022 budget bill on the granting of transportation and housing is putting us on the right path to a brighter future, and I look forward to continuing to build on these advances. “
House Republicans have raised concerns about the bill’s funding proposals, which target certain welfare programs.
The bill goes next to the full markup committee. The democratic leadership in the Senate has expressed an interest in considering infrastructure-oriented bills this summer. However, Senate finance leaders have yet to plan the review of their Means of Transport Approval Act for the 2022 budget year.
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