Congress Completes Action on Transportation Programs for FY 2006
On Friday, November 18, Congress completed action on the FY 2006 Appropriations bill that funds Department of Transportation agency programs including those of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. The President is expected to sign the bill after he arrives back in the country from his Asian trip. Until that time, the Continuing Resolution funding all programs at FY 2005 levels remains in effect (hopefully, only for a short period of time).
The funding levels in the new 2006 bill exactly mirror those provided for in the recently passed highway reauthorization bill.
Attached for your review is a copy of the Conference Report language. On page 3, the new program replacing CVARS is the new Safety Data Improvement Grant Program listed under motor carrier safety grants. On page 4, the Conference deleted language that had been in the Senate bill prohibiting use of federal funds to enforce the hours-of-service rule issued on April 16, 2003 as it applies to utilities and motion picture producers because of provisions in the new highway bill providing for a total hours-of-service exemption for the utility industry and keeping the old hours-of-service rules (prior to April 16, 2003) in place for movie producers.