Obama signs highway, student loan bill
President Barack Obama, surrounded by unemployed contruction workers and college students, signs the highway bill Friday afternoon. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood is at the far right in a light suit.
By KEN THOMAS
The Associated Press
WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama says a bill to keep construction workers on the job and prevent a spike in interest rates on new loans to college students "will make a real difference" for millions of Americans.
Obama signed into law legislation allowing more than $100 billion to be spent on highway and other transportation programs during the next two years. The projects would have expired June 30.
It also keeps interest rates of 3.4 percent for subsidized Stafford loans for undergraduates. The rates would have doubled for new loans beginning July 1 if Congress hadn't acted.
The president was joined by construction workers and college students for the bill signing at the White House. Obama signed the bill following a two-day bus trip through parts of Ohio and Pennsylvania.
The bill has several trucking industry related items, including a mandate for all commercial vehicles to be equipped with electronic logging devices and a requirement that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration conduct a study on the 34-hour restart provision in the new Hours of Service rule that is to go into effect in mid-2013.
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