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GOP Rescinds Trust Fund Guarantee

highway2January 10, 2011 – Well, this isn't welcome news. House Republicans voted to rescind a guarantee that Highway Trust Fund revenues would be spent to fund the critical highway and transit programs that stone producers rely upon to drive business. The move was almost unilaterally condemned by national highway and infrastructure interests. ARTBA President Pete Ruane, in a scathing response, said, “Thirteen years ago, Congressional Republicans and Democrats alike voted overwhelmingly to provide budgetary guarantees that ensured all federal gas and diesel tax user fee revenue collected for the Highway Trust Fund would be invested exclusively and in a timely manner in state highway, bridge and transit improvements. Today, House Republicans behind closed doors, in a secret ballot, unilaterally rescinded those guarantees as part of their new House rules package. This is a reversion back to the budget gimmicks of the past that allows the Highway Trust Fund balance to be used to hide the truesize of the federal deficit.” He didn't stop there. "The real life implication of this action is that it injects further uncertainty into the already reeling U.S. transportation construction market where unemployment is in excess of 18 percent—twice the national average," Ruane said.  Long-term transportation plans and projects require stable, predictable funding. With multi-year reauthorization of the federal highway and transit programs now more than 15 months overdue, this sends the wrong signal to the states and Wall Street.”