The House passed a six-month continuing resolution Thursday evening to fund the government until early 2013 -- without incorporating the transportation funding levels enacted in the new transportation bill, MAP-21.
H.J.Res. 117, passed by a vote of 329-91, extends current discretionary appropriations through March 27 of next year. That extension, however, does not take into account the passage of MAP-21, in which transportation funding levels are slightly higher.
American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials Executive Director John Horsley sent a letter to both House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), urging them to fully fund Highway and Transit programs with the same proportional funding increase available to most programs.
"When you return following the November elections, and conclude action on Fiscal Year 2013 appropriations, we strongly urge you to honor the funding levels established in law by MAP-21, which merely maintain baseline funding for the first year," Horsley said. "Given the state of the economy and the critical need for jobs, we look forward to your positive response."
Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) also sent a letter to Speaker Boehner Tuesday to state her dissatisfaction that the CR's funding levels for transportation do not match those in MAP-21, claiming the loss of that additional funding could cost up to 17,000 jobs.
"Congress made a commitment to the American people that we were going to invest in our nation's infrastructure at a time when our economy needs it the most. Congress cannot go back on that promise," she wrote in a letter. "The MAP-21 funding levels should be honored for fiscal year 2013. If the cut were to remain in the continuing resolution, it must be restored before any full-year transportation funding bill proceeds."