Blogs

Come to the Capitol Feb 23  

Transportation Day is Feb 23 details here

Job Creation and Transportation Infrastructure  

A press conference highlighting the connections between investment in transportation infrastructure and job creation was held Monday, October 24. This conference was held in anticipation of Governor Dayton's 2011 Job Summit that will be discussing Minnesota's economic growth and job creation strategies. Monday's press conference focused on the ability of transportation projects to get people working on the transportation system businesses need to move people and products, featuring the Minnesota Transportation Alliance's Roadmap to 2040.

Below are some articles detailing the press conference:

"It’s jobs, jobs, jobs at the Capitol," The Daily Globe

Roadmap to 2040  

Long-range transportation plan

Download here

End of the Gas Tax?  

 

   As the country once again faces a deadline with respect to authorization for federal surface transportation funding of September 30th, some interests are advocating that the authority to collect the 18.4 cent per gallon federal fuel tax (and other fees that are deposited in the Highway Trust Fund) be allowed to expire.  An expiration of this authority will cost the country’s transportation system about $100 million per day.  Clearly any failure to extend SAFETE-LU will be disastrous for Minnesota.  

Fortunately, Grover Norquist announced today that he does not view an extension of the existing gas tax as a tax increase or breaking the anti-tax pledge. See story here

New ASCE Report  

     American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) released a report entitled “Failure to Act; The Economic Impact of Current Investment Trends in Surface Transportation Infrastructure” which examines the costs a decaying infrastructure has on America.  The ASCE makes convincing arguments on how a failing infrastructure will cost Americans money in multiple ways.  Failing to make needed improvements today means that we will be paying for massive repairs in the future.

FAA Shutdown Ends  

Congress announced on Thursday that they would end the FAA shutdown.  A deal was reached that would extend contracts through September 16th, 2011.  However, this seems to be a band-aid situation, as the underlying disagreements between leaders are still there and will surely come up again in September.  President Obama said in a statement “I'm pleased that leaders in Congress are working together to break the impasse involving the FAA so that tens of thousands of construction workers and others can go back to work.”  If it passes and signed by Obama today, workers could get started as soon as Monday. 

 

Check out these articles on the subject!  

News from Washington  

UPDATE: President Obama signed a bill to increase the debt ceiling.  This includes cuts over the next 10 years, however what these cuts are is unclear.  The next step is to create 2012 fiscal budget bills, including the transportation bill, where the cuts will become apparent.  

The FAA shut down continues and looks like it won't be resolved until August recess is over.

The news out of Washington has been dominated by the negotiations over raising the nation’s debt ceiling prior to August 2nd.  The impacts of this debate for transportation are not clear – but with major cuts proposed for all “domestic discretionary spending” transportation is likely to be hit in the efforts to reduce the federal deficit- which will clearly be part of any deal to increase the debt ceiling.

Mn/Dot Letter Honors Contracts