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SENATORS JOHNSON AND BOXER URGE COLLEAGUES TO PROTECT 1.8 MILLION JOBS

September 1, 2011

WASHINGTON - Tim Johnson (D-SD), Chairman of the Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee, and Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee, today released the state-by-state impacts on job losses if the current surface transportation authorization bill is not extended by September 30. Senators Johnson and Boxer sent a letter to their colleagues in the Senate highlighting the urgent need for a short-term extension.
 
The current surface transportation bill expires on September 30, and unless Congress passes legislation to extend SAFETEA-LU by September 30th, 1.8 million jobs will be threatened nationwide.
 
The Senate is working on a bipartisan proposal that will support transportation programs at current funding levels.
 
The state-by-state job numbers can be accessed here, and the text of the letter is below. Each Senator received a copy of the letter with the jobs at stake in his or her own state highlighted
 
 
August 31, 2011
 
Dear Senator:
 
We want to bring to your attention a matter of immediate concern to the people of your state.
 
The Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act (SAFETEA-LU) authorizes funding for the construction of highway and transit projects.  On September 30, it will expire. 
 
IF CONGRESS DOES NOT TAKE IMMEDIATE ACTION TO PASS A SURFACE TRANSPORTATION AUTHORIZATION EXTENSION BILL BY SEPTEMBER 30, 1.8 MILLION JOBS ARE AT STAKE.  
 
Based on the U.S. Department of Transportation jobs models, the $52 billion in Federal funding provided through these programs, when matched by State and local investments, supports over 1.8 million jobs nationwide through all sectors of the economy.  At the earliest opportunity in September, the Senate must approve a bill that funds highway and public transportation programs at current levels through January 2012, so that America can avoid more unacceptable job losses.  It is critically important that the Senate pass this bill before the current transportation authorization expires.
 
We are working in the Environment and Public Works Committee and the Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee on a bipartisan proposal to reauthorize surface transportation programs for two years at current funding levels.  In the meantime, the current surface transportation bill must be extended to allow time to complete work on this legislation.
 
Attached is a breakdown of what is at stake in your state if SAFETEA-LU expires on September 30.
 
If you have questions regarding the extension, please contact us or our staff:  David Napoliello, EPW Committee Majority Senior Policy Advisor, at (202) 224-8832; or Homer Carlisle, Banking Committee Majority Professional Staff Member, at (202) 224-7391.
 
Sincerely,
 
 
 
Barbara Boxer                                                             Tim Johnson                                       
Chairman                                                                     Chairman                                            
Committee on Environment                                         Committee on Banking, Housing        
and Public Works                                                        and Urban Development         
 
 
-30-
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