Below is a press release sent out by the Association for Commuter Transportation in response to the passage of the FAST Act:
ACT Applauds Agreement on FAST ACT:
But Work Needs to be Done
“The FAST ACT is a step in the right direction, but cannot be the only step taken”
Washington, DC December 4, 2015– This week, Congress wrapped up an agreement on a 5-year Federal transportation bill that will spend more than $300 million on our nation’s infrastructure. Passage of this important piece of legislation is overdue and greatly appreciated. However, it represents a drop in the bucket in terms of what is needed to improve the state of our nation’s transportation network.
ACT President Rob Henry had the following to say about the FAST ACT:
“The Association for Commuter Transportation applauds the work done by Chairman Shuster (R-PA), Chairman Inhofe (R-OK), Ranking Member DeFazio (D-OR), Ranking Member Boxer (D-CA) and all those who were involved in the passage of the vital legislation. The FAST Act represents an important step to improving our nation’s transportation system. While the FAST Act is a step in the right direction, it cannot be the only step taken”.
The ‘FAST ACT’, which was nearly ten years in the making, was able to identify a hodge-podge of ‘pay-fors’ to find the necessary funding to ever so slightly increase spending over existing levels, 5% in the first year, and 2% each year after, or slightly above the current rate of inflation.
Rob Henry added,
“Passage of the FAST Act was a sort of political miracle and something that should be applauded. But the political challenges passing a 5-year bill of nearly flat funding underscores the reality that we must do more to maximize our existing network.”
The Association for Commuter Transportation believes that greater reforms and a new focus must replace stagnant and decades-old policies and practices. This revolution must happen at all levels of government, Federal, State, and local. Rather than solely relying on capital projects funded by inadequate Congressional funding to maintain the status quo, we should leverage innovators, the willing and able private sector, and the public to help us create capacity by optimizing existing systems.
Technology has transformed how we think about mobility. Smartphone apps and techniques that were unimaginable when most transportation policies were written have fostered a myriad of commuter transportation options.
Change is hard, breaking the mold is not easy. The Association for Commuter Transportation will look to help lead that change. Over the next weeks and months we will be unveiling new initiatives and partnerships that we hope will foster that change.
ACT President Rob Henry concluded by saying:
“ACT looks forward to working with its partners, stakeholders, and policy makers at all levels to be a leader in making our transportation system more efficient and effective. While the FAST ACT isn’t perfect, it provides us with the tools we need to move our transportation system into the 21st century”.
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If you would like more information about this topic, please contact Jason Pavluchuk at 202-285-6414 or email at Pavluchuk@actwb.org
About ACT: The Association for Commuter Transportation is a national organization dedicated to providing commuters with options such as carpooling, vanpooling, transit, and telework. ACT members include public and private transit providers, local governments, transportation organizations, universities, and employers who all work together to expand transportation options for commuters.