The Senate passed by a vote of 69 to 28 late on December 2 a continuing resolution or CR to fund the federal government at current levels through February 18, 2022 – acting just hours after the House of Representatives approved a similar measure by a vote of 221 to 212.
The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials noted that full-year appropriations for fiscal year 2022 continues to remain unresolved between Democrats and Republicans due to disagreements primarily over defense/non-defense spending parity and policy riders.
However, appropriators have agreed to keep the CR “clean” by limiting making certain exceptions or “anomalies” including keeping transportation programs funded at the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation or FAST Act levels instead of honoring increased funding levels laid out in the $1.2 trillion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act or IIJA signed into law by President Biden on November 15.
AASHTO’s transportation policy team noted that by passing a CR instead of a full-year appropriations package, Congress is in effect imposing an almost six-month extension of fiscal year 2021 funding levels.
That effectively denies state departments of transportation the necessary obligation limitation to support the roughly 20 percent increase in Highway Trust Fund formula funding provided within the IIJA for FY 2022, AASHTO said.