Leaders of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee announced this week they have agreed in principle on how to proceed with the next federal surface transportation authorization bill, the successor to 2012’s MAP-21. I also have the usual roundup of links on the future of the Highway Trust Fund, state activity on transportation revenues, public-private partnerships and tolling and state multi-modal strategies.

The federal Highway Trust Fund is expected to run out of money even earlier than expected this summer, according to new data released this week. That’s likely to make it even tougher for Congress to come up with a funding solution in time and it has many in Washington and around the country concerned about what would be an unprecedented situation for state transportation programs. I also have the usual collection of links to items on state activity on transportation revenues, public-private partnerships and tolling, and state multi-modal strategies.

Leaders in Washington State say a transportation funding package is dead for this legislative session, putting in jeopardy a number of mega-projects many say the state needs. I also have items this week on the nation’s road spending priorities and a reported uptick in transit ridership. Plus the usual updates on MAP-21 reauthorization, state transportation funding efforts, public-private partnerships, and state multi-modal strategies.

Alaska lawmakers are considering asking voters to create a state infrastructure fund that would help pay for airport, road and other projects around the state. Meanwhile, Connecticut and Kansas are among the states with similar trust funds that are looking to prevent future raids on those funds when times are tight. I also have my usual weekly round-up of items this week on the future of the Highway Trust Fund and MAP-21 reauthorization, state activity on transportation revenues, public-private partnerships, and multi-modal strategies being employed in various states and communities around the country.

The benefits of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to the nation’s infrastructure were touted this week as the 2009 federal stimulus package turned five years old. Meanwhile policymakers and analysts continued to express concern about future federal and state infrastructure investment both in Washington and state capitals.

With the federal Highway Trust Fund and the next surface transportation bill hanging in the balance, a number of national policymakers, stakeholders and analysts are beginning to weigh in with their preferences for what should happen in the months ahead. Here’s a roundup of some recent pronouncements on the subject as well as some other related resources.

As lawmakers in many states go back to work this month, one of the key issues they’re likely to face is how to meet transportation needs going forward. While some states appear poised to follow in the footsteps of the states that passed significant transportation revenue packages in 2013 (Maryland, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Virginia and Wyoming among them), electoral politics appear likely to play a much more significant role in the solutions they may opt for in 2014. Below are a few updates on some of the states highlighted in my post last month on the “States to Watch for 2014: Transportation Funding.” I also have details about an upcoming CSG webinar on the topic, links to recent articles about what may happen in Washington this year, news about some CSG-connected transportation folks moving on to greener pastures and a look at my dance card for next week’s annual Transportation Research Board confab in the Nation’s Capital.

It has been a busy year for states considering transportation revenue options. Maryland, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Virginia and Wyoming all approved significant transportation investment packages this year. Several more set in motion plans that could come to fruition next year. But a variety of factors could mean we’ll see even more activity on the transportation revenue front in state capitals in 2014. There are states with unfinished business from 2013, states with recommended actions on the table that could ripen into legislation, states where diverse coalitions are pushing investment and even states that have had recent transportation funding success but that are still seeking more sustainable solutions for the future. Success for those states in 2014 is far from assured, especially given the number of governors and legislators up for re-election. But factors like continuing uncertainty at the federal level, infrastructure needs coming into sharp focus and the realization that fixing the infrastructure in the near term will be far less expensive than putting it off for another day could mean another busy year for state transportation funding efforts. Here’s my annual rundown of states to keep an eye on next year.  

Transportation was on the ballot around the country in a variety of ways last week—both directly and indirectly. While most of the action was not at the state level, there were a number of mayoral contests, bond measures and local tax increases that could have a significant impact in communities across the nation. Here’s a roundup of what happened and what it all might mean.

Day two of the CSG Transportation Policy Academy in Washington, DC included a transportation policy roundtable featuring a variety of transportation stakeholders and experts. The final panel of the morning featured: Emil Frankel, a visiting scholar at the Bipartisan Policy Center, former U.S. Department of Transportation official during the Bush Administration and veteran of previous CSG Transportation Policy Academies; Sarah Kline, Research Director for the DC-based advocacy coalition Transportation for America, former Senate staffer and D.C.-area transit official; and Paul Feenstra, Senior Vice President for Government and External Affairs at the Intelligent Transportation Society of America (ITS America). They discussed the prospects for MAP-21 reauthorization, how local communities are energized to invest in transportation options, how technology solutions can help communities get the most out of existing infrastructure, the shortcomings of transportation project planning processes and how MAP-21’s focus on performance measurement may help improve them.

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