Last Friday night (January 25), President Trump and Congress reached an agreement to end the partial government shutdown and reopen federal agencies impacted by the lapse in federal funding, including the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT). The Continuing Resolution (H.J. Res. 28, the Further Additional Continuing Appropriations Act, 2019) provides funding for these departments and agencies (including DOT) through February 15, 2019. Although the Continuing Resolution did not provide specific border wall funding, the House and Senate have established a Conference Committee of selected Representatives and Senators of the Appropriations Committees to try to reach bipartisan consensus on a proposal for border security funding before the Continuing Resolution expires. If a bipartisan agreement is reached, it is likely that Congress will pass the full-year Fiscal Year 2019 Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies (THUD) Appropriations bill described in last week’s Legislative Update.
APTA Urges Federal Transit Administration to Take Immediate Actions
Yesterday (January 29), APTA President and CEO Paul P. Skoutelas and Chair David M. Stackrow, Sr. sent a letter to Acting Administrator K. Jane Williams of the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) to highlight the impacts of the shutdown on public transportation agencies and express our strong support of FTA and its efforts. In the letter, APTA urges FTA to take several immediate actions to ameliorate the significant impacts of the shutdown on public transportation agencies and the riders they serve:
- Process all pending requests for reimbursement for public transportation agencies, beginning with requests for reimbursement of operating expenses or identified hardships;
- Approve all pending requests for operating assistance and capital project approvals, including requests for Letters of No Prejudice;
- Complete the certification of State Safety Oversight programs of the four pending applications that are currently under review by FTA;
- Issue Fiscal Year 2019 apportionments for FTA programs as soon as possible and before the Continuing Resolution expires on February 15; and
- Take all other possible actions to help public transportation agencies restore public transportation operations and make critical infrastructure upgrades.
To view the full letter, please click here.