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In separate statements this evening, Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee, and Chairman of the Surface Transportation Authorization Conference Committee along with House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman John Mica (R-FL), announced that the conferees had reached an agreement in reconciling the Senate’s surface transportation authorization bill, Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21/S.1813), and the House’s Surface Transportation Extension Act of 2012, Part II (H.R. 4348).
Senator Boxer was quoted as saying that the two sides met “half way”, adding, “Our country needs the kind of economic boost that this bill offers, and I am looking forward to getting it to the President’s desk.” Congressman Mica echoed Boxer’s statement, saying: “This agreement will help strengthen our nation’s construction industry and provide stability to highway, bridge and infrastructure projects across the country.” Both Senator Boxer and Chairman Mica commented on the bill’s ability to cut red-tape, quickly deliver projects, as well as furthering state and local control over federal funds.
In order to for a vote to take place this week, the text of the conference report would need to be submitted to the House of Representatives Office of the Clerk and posted online by midnight tonight, in order to abide by the House’s seventy-two hour review rule. There are reportedly a few minor details that need to be ironed out, but conferees are looking to sign the conference report between 9pm and 10pm tonight.
While final details are unknown, Congressman Mica did confirm the bill would run through September 2014, a year longer than the Senate bill had originally authorized.