House Passes Five-Year Transportation Bill with Comstock Provisions
Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Barbara Comstock (R-VA) today voted for the conference report on the five-year surface transportation reauthorization known as the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act, or the FAST Act. This legislation passed the House by an overwhelmingly bipartisan vote of 359 to 65 and must now be approved by the Senate so that it may be sent to the president for his signature. Upon passage, Comstock made the following statement:
“Today the House provided long-term certainty to local and state governments by passing this five-year bill. The FAST Act will improve our roads, bridges, and infrastructure so that families and goods can move more freely, safely, and efficiently throughout our region and the country. This bill also streamlines the environmental review and permitting process so projects can start in a timely manner, eliminates or consolidates six separate offices in the Department of Transportation (DOT), increases transparency at DOT, promotes private investment within our surface transportation system, and will help facilitate economic growth by modernizing our systems and increasing innovation.
“This bill includes a number of my provisions which authorize the Assistant Secretary of Transportation for Research and Technology to develop strategies to employ cutting-edge tools and high technology to reduce traffic congestion. It must be both a regional and a national goal to meld innovation and technology so that we may bring our transportation systems into the 21st Century.
“Working with Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton and Rep. Donna Edwards, we were able to include important provisions concerning Metro safety and accountability. Metro is the second-busiest transit system in the United States and with new management Metro needs a top to bottom cultural change and refocused mission to ensure reliable and safe service to its customers—many of whom are my constituents. I appreciate Speaker Ryan naming me as a conferee to the final negotiations, and I thank Chairman Shuster for his tireless efforts to get this legislation across the finish line. I am proud that this vital legislation was supported by a large bipartisan coalition, and I look forward to the benefits this bill will bring to America’s transportation and infrastructure systems.”