Infrastructure Investor, a trade publication, examined how the proposed extensions to the transportation authorization could pull money from states through rescission. Monday’s article, US states face $9bn in transportation funding cuts, discusses the looming rescission of budget authority required by SAFETEA-LU, as well as the proposed extensions of program authority moving forward in the Senate. The article extensively quotes Ed Kussy, former Federal Highway Administration Deputy Chief Counsel, and current Nossaman partner. Excerpts from the article follow.
…the rescission was worked into the bill as a way to get the bill to score, or cost less. The bill’s sponsor, Republican Alaska Representative Don Young, wanted a higher score, while the Bush administration wanted a lower score, Kussy recalls.
By requesting that $8.7 billion in unspent contract authority be given back, the rescission allowed the bill to score lower and get the president’s approval. So both sides got what they wanted. Well, now it’s come time to pay the piper, Kussy said.
The rescission would not take money away from projects they’ve already contracted out, Kussy explains, but it would crimp their ability to obligate further projects.
Kussy said the extensions do not address the rescission, which he believes was meant as an inducement to make Congress pass the next [transportation reauthorisation] bill on time.
The full article is available online at:
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