Freight infrastructure improvements and how to pay for these projects remain a hot topic not only with the Obama Administration, but also within the halls of Congress. A day after U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx sent a four-year surface transportation proposal to Capitol Hill with a new dedicated freight program, congressional transportation leaders held an April 30 roundtable with freight community stakeholders to hear how Congress can be most helpful in the next reauthorization. Senators Tom Carper (D-Del.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) and John Barrasso (R-Wyo.)—all of whom hold leadership roles on committees that will write the next surface transportation law—participated in the discussion. Representatives from the trucking, rail, waterway, agriculture and user communities, as well as a state DOT secretary, all coalesced around the strong role the federal government should play in goods movement and the need for revenues to bolster new investments in multimodal freight related infrastructure improvements.
Separately, Senate EPW Committee Chairman Boxer said her panel’s reauthorization proposal could be released this week.