Congress set to pass highway bill

The House overwhelmingly passed the highway bill today on a vote of 412-8, reported the Associated Press, with the Senate expected to OK it later today

The House overwhelmingly passed the highway bill today on a vote of 412-8, reported the Associated Press, with the Senate expected to OK it later today. White House Press Secretary Scott McClellen said yesterday that the President is “pleased” with the highway bill agreement, hinting that the President will sign the bill.

The highway bill contains key interstate tolling language that specifies that new tolling facilities are eligible only on new lanes. This marks a significant victory for trucking interests, who had lobbied against legislation that would allow limited tolling on existing interstate lanes.

The Associated General Contractors of America (AGC), a major lobbying group for the construction industry, applauded the bill.

“Considering the budgetary constraints, House and Senate conferees used every available revenue source to increase funding,” said AGC CEO Stephen E. Sandherr. “Transportation needs remain great and, while this legislation moves us in the right direction, fully addressing those needs should remain a priority. AGC is pleased that this bill includes many solid policy changes that we recommended to Congress—changes that will help our members deliver projects quicker and safer.”

To see the full text of the highway bill, go to www.house.gov/rules/109textTEALU.htm.

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