September is gearing up to be one of the busiest months ever for federal transportation issues. What’s going on, you ask? Well, according to Larry Ehl’s Federal Transportation Issues Daily website, the FAA authorization expires mid-month, and the highway/transit authorization and federal transportation taxing authority must be renewed by the end of the month. And the 2012 fiscal year transportation appropriations bill (or a short term continuation) must be enacted before October 1.
Let’s start small though. This week, the short-term extension of SAFETEA-LU will be the primary topic of a Senate Environment and Public Works Committee hearing on Thursday. The Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee, which has jurisdiction over public transportation programs, is expected to produce a four-month extension that will be added to the EPW bill.
Also, we’re expecting to hear soon about the House Transportation Committee’s plans to act on an extension. Abd President Obama addresses Congress and the nation Thursday evening and is expected to include transportation/infrastructure proposals in his jobs initiative.
So, plan your week/month accordingly. I know I will be.