FAST Act 1-Year Extension Approved

President Trump signed on Wednesday night legislation to extend the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act for a year as well as continue federal funding at current levels through Dec. 11.

The action averts a possible shutdown of the federal government that would have been triggered on Thursday because the Senate has thus far failed to approve spending bills for federal fiscal year 2021.

The House had passed its own spending bills earlier but those had languished due to the lack of Senate action.

The FAST Act extension provides at least $12.6 billion for public transit investment and prevents a $6 billion across-the-board cut to public transit agencies. The legislation provides $3.2 billion to the Mass Transit Account.

It also assures continued spending on highway projects and federal funding of Amtrak.

The continuing resolution will maintain Amtrak funding at FY2020 levels and won’t affect the carrier’s plans to reduce the operation of most long-distance trains to three days a week this month.

The American Public Transportation Association said it is the first time in 30 years that Congress enacted a one-year extension of surface transportation authorization programs after the lapse of a multiyear authorization act.

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