The Department of Transportation said it will delay reimbursements to states when the Highway Trust Fund dips below $4 billion around Aug. 1.
Speaking at a breakfast in Washington, D.C., Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said DOT is notifying states that federal reimbursements for highway and transit construction projects will be made every two weeks instead of immediately, he said.
Foxx said “there’s no good option” and that he didn’t think the American public understands how severe the crisis is right now.
Highway project funds will drop below $4 billion in July and transportation funds will drop below $1 billion in August, DOT has previously reported. The current highway bill is set to expire Sept. 30. The Highway Trust Fund is projected to be insolvent by fiscal year 2015.
Lawmakers are eyeing a short-term patch to the dwindling Highway Trust Fund in an effort to keep infrastructure funds flowing while they work on a longer-term solution.
Leaders of the Senate Finance Committee are expected to meet the week of July 7 to consider the PATH Act, which would approve $9 billion to keep the Highway Trust Fund solvent through the end of this year in part by transferring $750 million from the Leaking Underground Storage Tank Fund (LUST) to the Highway Trust Fund. The measure also would change the tax rate on liquefied natural gas (LNG) to a rate based on its energy equivalent of a gallon of diesel.
House Republican Leaders have proposed a one-year extension of surface transportation legislation paid for by trimming Saturday postal services and transferring the balance of the Leaking Underground Storage Tank Trust Fund to the Highway Trust Fund.
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