This update from Metro's government relations staff neatly summarizes the current state of Congress:
U.S. Senate Votes to Clear Way for Consideration of Transportation Spending Bill
Today, the U.S. Senate voted, by a margin of 73 to 26, to invoke cloture on S. 1243, the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development bill for Fiscal Year 2014. The cloture vote clears the path for the bill to be considered by the full Senate. The Senate’s transportation bill, consistent with President Obama’s Fiscal Year 2014 Budget, would fully fund the New Starts program. This funding would permit the Federal Transit Administration to fully fund our agency’s two New Starts projects (Purple Line Extension and Regional Connector). As currently drafted, the House transportation spending bill would offer no federal funding for these same projects. The Senate bill would also, if adopted, provide $550 million for the popular TIGER grant program, while the House transportation bill would eliminate funding for the TIGER program. Our government relations staff will continue to monitor the Fiscal Year 2014 appropriations process to ensure that our Board-approved priorities are advanced.