Federal Agencies Funded Through March 4, 2011; SAFETEA-LU Extended to September 30, 2011; Maine/Vermont Pilot Program Not Extended
Today, the Congress has passed, and the President is expected to sign, a short-term Continuing Resolution (CR) that will fund the Department of Transportation, FMCSA operations and state safety grant programs at 2010 levels through March 4, 2011.
Earlier efforts to pass legislation in both the House and Senate that would have funded the government through the end of the 2011 Fiscal Year did not succeed.
The new short-term CR also extends SAFETEA-LU authorized surface transportation programs, including FMCSA and motor carrier safety grant programs, through September 30, 2011. This is the sixth extension of the 2005 passed SAFETEA-LU legislation that was to originally sunset in September 2009.
The Maine/Vermont truck weight pilot program was not extended in the March 4 CR. The pilot officially expired last Thursday, December 16, 2010. Language renewing the pilot had been included in the full 2011 Omnibus Appropriations bill that the Senate had been considering last week. However, short-term CRs generally do not include measures other than those dealing with funding issues. Thus, the pilot expired primarily due to the legislative process rather than a decision on its merits.
It is possible that the pilot may again be on the table when the new Congress prepares legislation to fund the government, hopefully, through September 30, 2011, the end of the Fiscal Year.