September 08,2008

Baucus Condemns Jobs-Killing Objection To Highway Trust Fund Fix

Fourth effort this Congress to create highway jobs, repair failing U.S. roads remains blocked by two Senators’ objection

Washington, DC – Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) late today condemned the procedural objection preventing Senate consideration of H.R. 6532, a House-passed measure to restore the Highway Trust Fund balance. This afternoon, Baucus hailed the news that the Senate Majority Leader would seek to take up the bill and immediately return $8 billion to the Trust Fund to save highway jobs, create thousands more, and ensure the safety of the nation’s roads and bridges. The Bush administration is urging the passage of a trust fund fix. Tonight, an objection in the Senate is preventing the bill from moving forward.

“This objection endangers jobs and all the Americans who drive on this country’s roads and bridges,” Baucus said. “The issue is clear. The Highway Trust Fund is still missing money borrowed in years past, and the gas price crunch is cutting off the regular sales that would keep it solvent now. No trust fund means no new road repairs, and no new road repairs means dangerous driving and thousands of people out of work when they could have good-paying highway jobs. Americans don’t want political games on this, they want action from leaders.”

Baucus has fought to replenish the Trust Fund in the 110th Congress. In September 2007, he proposed a $5 billion highway fix as part of the Finance-passed FAA bill, which was blocked in late April 2008. On June 26 of this year, in light of expectations that the Trust Fund deficit was worsening, Baucus was joined by Senator Reid in an effort to move an $8 billion Highway Trust Fund fix. Before August recess 2008, Baucus sought to advance the $8 billion Highway Trust Fund fix as part of the Jobs, Energy, Families and Disaster Relief Act.

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