President Obama signs long-term surface transportation bill into law

Here’s the legislative update from Metro:

Earlier today, President Obama signed into law the long-term surface transportation authorization bill recently passed by Congress – Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act (FAST Act). Yesterday, both the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate overwhelmingly passed the new transportation law.  The bill authorizes approximately $305 billion for Highway, Transit and Railroad programs over 5 years ($61 billion per year).  Passage of the FAST Act by Congress and President Obama signing the measure into law today ends a process of Congress repeatedly adopting extensions to the current surface transportation authorization law – MAP-21.

“The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) is proud of the leading role U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer and members of the Los Angeles County Congressional Delegation played in passing the long term surface transportation bill that President Obama signed into law today,” shared Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority Chair Mark Ridley-Thomas. “In addition to Senator Boxer’s remarkable effort to ensure passage of this bill, we are grateful of the leading role that Congresswoman Grace Napolitano played as a conferee for the FAST Act and the support of Congresswoman Janice Hahn, in her capacity as a member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. Metro will be securing approximately $600 million in formula funding from the FAST Act over the next federal fiscal year to enhance mobility for Los Angeles County’s ten million residents.  We can also expect the FAST Act to deliver hundreds of millions of dollars to Los Angeles County in the coming year to build our growing rail system. Lastly, I want to personally thank President Obama for signing the FAST Act into law today,” added Chair Ridley-Thomas.

Categories: Policy & Funding

8 replies

  1. Will this funding only be used for surface street improvements or will this help with current measure R funded projects that need help with funding?

    • There is money in the federal bill for transit — about the same levels as the previous bill.

      Steve Hymon
      Editor, The Source

  2. Since the ‘long-term surface transportation’ is now signed by the president, will this make America Fast Forward active or it’s separate?

    • Hi Mike;

      It’s separate. The bill basically continues current levels of funding for transit with a few changes here and there.

      Steve Hymon
      Editor, The Source

  3. Kind of curious, will this funding go towards a future light rail or any other transportation project from the Valley to the westside?

    • Hi G.D.M,

      The bill doesn’t provide funds to any particular transit agency. It provides the outlines of what the federal govt will spend money on transportation-wise. In terms of projects, Metro can (and will) continue to apply for federal grants and loans but it doesn’t sound like there will be a larger pool of money available.

      Steve Hymon
      Editor, The Source

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