September 08,2008

Baucus Says Now Is Time To Create Jobs, Repair American Infrastructure

Finance Chairman applauds move to replenish Highway Trust Fund now

Washington, DC – Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) hailed news today from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) to move H.R. 6532, a House-passed measure to restore the Highway Trust Fund balance. Baucus has led the Senate effort to return $8 billion to the Trust Fund this year in order to save highway jobs, create thousands more, and ensure the safety of the nation’s roads and bridges. The original bill had an effective date of September 30. The revised legislation will make the transfer effective immediately upon enactment.

“Time is growing short for this Congress, but there are long lines at the unemployment office and a long list of critical repairs needed to American infrastructure,” Baucus said. “With the Trust Fund already missing $8 billion and dwindling further as Americans buy less gasoline, Congress absolutely must act now to replenish the Highway Trust Fund, create good-paying highway jobs here at home, and make America's roads and bridges safer for all who drive them.”

Baucus has fought to replenish the Trust Fund three times this Congress. In September 2007, he proposed a $5 billion highway fix as part of the Finance-passed FAA bill. The FAA bill was blocked in late April 2008, including the proposed Highway Trust Fund fix. 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 attempted to move this $8 billion Highway Trust Fund fix as part of the Jobs, Energy, Families and Disaster Relief Act.

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