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Congress Approves Extension of Highway Bill

The Senate passed HR 662, legislation to extend federal highway and transit programs for another seven months. Similar legislation was previously passed 421-4 by the House of Representatives. The latest temporary extension of SAFETEA-LU was welcomed by the construction industry.

"With Congress passing yet another short-term extension of the Highway bill to keep the program running through September, it is critical that they now move to serious action on a comprehensive, long-term bill,” said Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) President Dennis Slater. “America's urgent need to rebuild roads, highways and bridges requires a long-term strategy; we can’t afford any more delays. Congress needs to show serious bipartisan leadership and action to address this critical national priority, so that a six-year bill can be enacted within this extension period. If the President wants manufacturers to put people to work jumpstart the economy, he will insist on a six-year Highway bill to build safer roads and bridges, and work with the Congress to find a way to get it done. America’s equipment manufacturers stand ready to help them succeed."

American Trucking Associations President Bill Graves noted the importance of highway safety and improvements.

“Nothing is more critical to our members than highway safety,” Graves said. “This legislation will ensure that funding for important safety and enforcement programs, not to mention needed highway improvements, will continue unabated through the end of the current fiscal year. As a former governor, I am acutely aware of how important it is for states to have a stable source of funding for their highway and safety programs.