SAFETEA-LU Extension

National Governors Association • National Conference of State Legislatures • National League of Cities • National Association of Counties • The Council of State Governments • International City/County Management Association 


November 17, 2010 

The Honorable Harry Reid
Majority Leader
United States Senate
Washington, DC  20510 

The Honorable Mitch McConnell
Minority Leader
United States Senate
Washington, DC  20510

The Honorable Nancy Pelosi
Speaker
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, DC  20515

The Honorable John Boehner
Minority Leader
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, DC  20515

 

Dear  Senator Reid, Senator McConnell, Speaker Pelosi and Representative Boehner: 

Our organizations, representing local and state government officials across the United States, urge you to pass a long-term extension of existing federal programs for highways and transit as soon as possible.  This will allow all parties in the new Congress sufficient time to work toward an innovative, multi-year reauthorization of federal surface transportation programs that will sustain transportation investment, create new jobs, and provide stability to workers and industry. 

An extension of sufficient length is far superior to a string of short-term extensions that increase uncertainty for states and local governments and the construction industry.  The duration of this extension must account for not only organizational realities, but also substantive responsibilities of all parties in a new Congress.  Evaluating the issues and legislating towards a multi-year reauthorization of federal surface transportation programs to ensure our competitiveness in the 21st century requires a commitment of time. 

A long-term extension, moreover, is essential to ensure reliability in transportation planning because short-term extensions force states and local governments to focus on smaller projects rather than invest in comprehensive infrastructure projects that require federal funding certainty.  

As 2011 approaches, we look forward to working closely with the 112th Congress to develop a sustainable national strategy for surface transportation infrastructure.

Sincerely,

Raymopnd C. Scheppach, Executive Director
National Governors Association

William T. Pound, Executive Director
National Conference of State Legislatures

David Atkins, Executive Director
The Council of State Governments

Larry E. Naake, Executive Director
National Association of Counties

Donald J. Borut, Executive Director
National League of Cities

Robert J. O'Neil, Executivve Director
International City/County Management Association  

 

Cc: Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood
House T&I Chair James Oberstar
Senate EPW Chair Barbara Boxer
House T&I Ranking Member John Mica
Senate EPW Ranking Member James Inhofe
Senate EPW Subcmte on Transportation and Infrastructure Chair Baucus
Senate EPW Subcmte on Transportation and Infrastructure Ranking Member Voinovich
House T&I Subcmte on Highways and Transit Chair DeFazio
House T&I Subcmte on Highways and Transit Ranking Member Duncan