WASHINGTON — The House Appropriations Committee has released the fiscal year 2019 Transportation, Housing and Urban Development (THUD) funding bill, which it considered in subcommittee Wednesday.
The legislation includes funding for the Department of Transportation, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, and other related agencies.
In total, the bill reflects an allocation of $71.8 billion in discretionary spending – $1.5 billion above the fiscal year 2018 enacted level and $23.8 billion above the request. The allocation reflects the second year of the bipartisan budget agreement, and again targets resources to rebuild the nation’s infrastructure, including airports, roads, bridges and rail. This funding will support critical infrastructure investments at the state and local level, and will provide needed resources for community development and essential housing programs, the committee chairman said.
“For too long, the transportation infrastructure in our nation has been neglected, which has dampened growth and efficiency. This bill will provide a much-needed boost in funding for improvements in our infrastructure system, whether it is roads, rail, transit systems or air and waterways,” Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen, R-N.J., said. “It also supports core community and housing programs to ensure shelter for our most vulnerable citizens, and to provide better opportunity for our local communities to thrive.”
The bill includes $27.8 billion in discretionary appropriations for the Department of Transportation for fiscal year 2019. This is $542 million above the fiscal year 2018 enacted level and $11.7 billion above the president’s request. In total budgetary resources, including offsetting collections, the bill provides $87.8 billion to improve and maintain our nation’s transportation infrastructure. The bill targets funding to programs and projects that will increase efficiency, safety, reliability, and quality of life for the traveling public, and will help create jobs and spur
The bill provides regulatory relief to industry by extending the prohibition on enforcement of the electronic logging device regulation in the case of livestock and insect haulers and facilitates interstate commerce by affirming a uniform Hours of Service rule.
The bill allows $46 billion from the Highway Trust Fund to be spent on the Federal-aid Highways Program, which is $1 billion above the fiscal year 2018 level. This funding mirrors the authorized levels and will provide much-needed growth and improvements within America’s highway system. In addition, the bill provides an extra $4.25 billion in discretionary highway funding – a total increase of $2.76 billion for roads and bridges over fiscal year 2018.
The legislation contains funding for the various transportation safety programs and agencies within the Department of Transportation. This includes $982 million in total budgetary resources for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) – an increase of $67 million over the fiscal year 2018 enacted level – and $666 million is included for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, as authorized under the FAST Act. Also included is $275 million for the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, an increase of $3 million over the fiscal year 2018 enacted level.
The committee did not issue a timetable for further discussion on the bill.
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