The search for a new transportation bill has passed a key milepost in the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee (EPW). Leaders agreed on a blueprint for the highway-policy portion of an eventual long-term measure. The bill could span six years with funding set at current levels, plus small hikes for inflation.
But the make-or-break issue is finding new revenue to attain the hoped-for higher funding. EPW Chairman Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) pegs the need at $16 billion a year. But it will be up to the Senate Finance and House Ways and Means committees, not EPW, to find the money.