Jul 29 2005


PLEASE NOTE: The Senate passed H.R. 3 this evening by a vote of 91 to 4. The bill is now headed to the President’s desk for his signature.

WASHINGTON, D. C. -- U.S. Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL) today announced conference committee approval of H.R. 3, the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, and Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU). The House is expected to vote on final passage tonight, and the Senate will consider the bill following House approval. This legislation, commonly referred to as the Highway Bill, authorizes $286.5 billion in funding for Federal-aid highways, highway safety programs, transit programs, and other purposes. Senator Shelby was a member of the Conference Committee.

Senator Shelby said, “I am pleased we were able to reach agreement on 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. I am also proud of the Banking Committee’s bipartisan effort to craft the transit title 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. Further, this bill provides guidance and important funding for cities and states across the country to plan and construct important road, bridge, and highway safety projects in order to meet the needs of their growing communities” added Shelby, Chairman of the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee, which has jurisdiction of the transit portion of H.R. 3.

“Passage of the Highway Bill is significant as it provides Alabama with the tools to begin planning and construction of major road projects as well as maintain progress on ongoing projects. I am also pleased that we were able to include funding for a number of important regional projects as they will improve the state’s infrastructure on a large scale and have tremendous economic impact in the years to come,” Shelby added.

The projects included in this legislation will be disbursed to the State over the life of the bill.

City of Montgomery Intelligence Transportation System (ITS) - $4 million

Senator Shelby said, “I am pleased these funds are being made available for an Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) in Montgomery. These funds will be used to upgrade traffic monitoring systems, including traffic light improvements and installation of additional camera systems to monitor high traffic areas particularly during emergency situations.”

Montgomery Airport Intermodal Center - $4 million

Senator Shelby said, “This project is extremely important to the Montgomery Airport as the airport continues to expand. This facility will serve as a hub for park and ride patrons, bus, air and private transportation.”

Auburn Intermodal Facility - $4 million

Senator Shelby said, “This important intermodal facility will help meet the needs of the growing Auburn University community. Constructing this facility on Auburn’s campus will help the University move towards its goal of becoming a more pedestrian-friendly campus.”

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