May 17 2005


WASHINGTON, D. C.--- U.S. Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL) today commended passage of H.R. 3, the Transportation Equity Act. The bill, which passed the Senate by a vote of 89 - 11, authorizes funds for Federal-aid highways, highway safety programs, transit programs, and for other purposes.

Senator Shelby said, “I am pleased the Senate passed this important piece of legislation. I believe that reauthorizing the highway bill is essential to developing and improving infrastructure which leads to economic development and job creation. This bill provides guidance for cities and states across the country to plan important road, bridge, and traffic safety projects in order to meet the needs of our growing communities.”

“I am proud of the Banking Committee’s bipartisan effort to craft the transit portion of the highway bill. It successfully balances the needs of growing states and rural states, and recognizes the unique demands of the transit-reliant public. Among many improvements, we have streamlined the FTA’s grant process, and created funding flexibility to allow for innovative technologies like Bus Rapid Transit. This bill will ensure that the country’s existing infrastructure continues to be funded, while allowing for the necessary growth to meet future needs,” added Shelby, Chairman of the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee, which has jurisdiction of the transit portion of H.R. 3.

H.R. 3, which passed the House of Representatives on March 10, 2005, will now go to a conference committee with members of the House and Senate.

- 30 -