[UPDATE 9/11/08] Yesterday the senate broke through their deadlock and approved $8 Billion to restore the solvency of the highway trust fund. Very good news indeed. [/UPDATE]
[Editor] From American Association of Highway and Transportation Officials, released September 9, 2008. Contact: Tony Dorsey 202-624-3690 [/Editor]
States have put the brakes on millions of dollars of highway construction projects and are scrambling to substitute scarce state funds for the federal funds that have been cut off due to the crisis in the Highway Trust Fund.
“States are suspending new contract awards, halting right-of-way acquisition and looking for ways to stop on-going construction while maintaining public safety,” said AASHTO Executive Director John Horsley. “It is truly a crisis that Congress must resolve immediately. Every day the federal IOUs are piling up and the states’ financial hole gets deeper.”
U.S. Secretary of Transportation Mary Peters announced on Friday that the federal government would slow down reimbursements to the states, and would likely be able to make only partial payments beginning next week, due to insufficient funds in the Highway Trust Fund. She has urged Congress to enact by the end of the week an $8 billion transfer from the General Fund to preserve the solvency of the Highway Trust Fund. Action is pending in the Senate.
More than a dozen states have detailed the impacts of the federal default on state programs, either in news releases or via media reports. Those impacts are available on the AASHTO website www.transportation.org or at the following links: [Editor] Read on for the rest of the press release. [/Editor]