The American Road and Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA) on Jan. 13 launched a “Gridlock Clock” to draw attention to the nearly 835 days that have passed since the expiration of the last multi-year surface transportation reauthorization law, SAFETEA-LU.
“The time for congressional dithering and gamesmanship is over,” said ARTBA President Pete Ruane in a press release. “It’s now time for the Congress to do its job and take action on a long-term highway and transit investment bill.”
ARTBA’s “Gridlock Clock” is featured on the organization’s home page and includes a toll-free action hotline so that the association’s members can urge their congressional delegations to pass new legislation. The grassroots mobilization is the continuation of a multi-faceted advocacy and media blitzkrieg that will be expanded during the next few months.
SAFETEA-LU expired Sept. 30, 2009. Since that time, Congress has kept the highway and transit programs operating under a series of eight extensions. ARTBA says the continued uncertainty on a long-term bill has had negative impacts on state transportation planning process, transportation construction industry job creation, and capital investment decisions.
ARTBA says the organization itself and its members are continuing to push for a multi-year bill that, at minimum, maintains current federal highway and transit investment levels.