Negotiations continued in Washington into the afternoon of Jan. 19 over whether to extend government funding and approve various policy measures or trigger a partial shutdown of federal agencies after midnight.
The CEO of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce proposed that Congress pay for modernizing roads, bridges and transit systems by raising the federal excise tax on motor fuels by 25 cents a gallon over five years and "indexed for inflation and improving fuel economy."
Some leading lawmakers are calling for a return to the practice of letting members of Congress sponsor targeted infrastructure project spending, or earmarks, as a way to enhance congressional control over how the money is spent.
The Federal Highway Administration said it was making available $6.5 million in "quick release" emergency relief funds for further repairs to hurricane-damaged roads and bridges throughout the U.S. Virgin Islands.
General Motors Co. said Jan. 12 it has asked the Department of Transportation to approve a safety petition under which it would begin operating a fleet of self-driving cars next year in a ride-sharing service, using vehicles that have no steering wheels, pedals or other manual controls.
Ford Motor Co. said it will sharply increase its investment in electric vehicles to have 40 models in its global lineup by 2022, Reuters reported, while shifting capital spending away from sedans and internal combustion engines to build more trucks and electrics or hybrids.
The EPA this month awarded more than $1.65 million in grants to replace old diesel-burning engines from transportation equipment in the Pacific Northwest with cleaner-burning newer models.
The California Department of Transportation battled to dig out a major highway after killer mudslides, commuters and truckers struggled to fund ways around the highway outages and Amtrak rushed to bring more trains online to help move people crowding into stations.
Gov. Jerry Brown has named Brian Annis to be California's acting transportation secretary effective Feb. 1, when current Secretary Brian Kelly leaves to become the next CEO of the California High-Speed Rail Authority.
Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy and Department of Transportation Commissioner James Redeker said Jan. 10 that they were postponing hundreds of transportation projects totaling $4.3 billion until the General Assembly appropriates new revenue for the Special Transportation Fund.
The Nebraska Department of Transportation this month selected 22 local bridge project proposals to share $4 million in state funding under its County Bridge Match Program.
AASHTO said it is taking nominations through April 4 for candidates to participate in its annual National Transportation Leadership Institute, a two-week management training program for transportation department officials held at the Indiana Historical Society Conference Center in Indianapolis.
Association President John Schroer this month named Heather Stout of the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet to serve as vice chair of the Special Committee on AASHTOWare.
AASHTO Journal is published every Friday by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials. The Journal's weekly email newsletter is available for subscription free of charge. Contact us at email@example.com or 202-624-5800.