The U.S. House of Representatives voted 387-35 late May 19 to extend Highway Trust Fund financing for two months through the end of July.
H.R. 2353, the Highway and Transportation Funding Act of 2015, now advances to the Senate, which is expected to approve it later this week.
Current highway law expires May 31. However the House is set to recess on May 21, and the Senate departs one day later, giving elected officials just days to ensure that highway funding continues.
In a joint statement, Reps. Bill Shuster (R-Pa.) and Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) said they preferred to move an extension through the end of the year, but needed more time to reach a bipartisan agreement on offsets.
Rep. Shuster, Chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, has also said that Congress could have to pass another short-term transportation extension after July 31.
The Ways and Means Committee, chaired by Rep. Ryan, is working on tax reform, which Rep. Shuster said is historically “where these things have been addressed.”
“We may have to very well push it out towards the end of the year to give them the time to do their work,” Rep. Shuster reportedly told members of the House Rules Committee. “I think in a tax reform bill, that’s where you’re going to address this.”
House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) said he is planning to tie a large-scale highway bill to tax reform later this year, Politico reported.
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