Mr. MARSHALL. Mr. Chairman, the bill provides that the Secretary shall conduct research. It actually mandates that the Secretary conduct research that's designed to improve the efficiency of vehicles that are used in transportation and the infrastructure that refuels or recharges those vehicles.
Mr. Chairman, it does not specifically, as it now stands, direct the Secretary to consider the unique challenges that face rural areas with regard to these issues. The population is not as dense. It can be more expensive to develop the infrastructure.
The distances typically that have to be covered by those who are using vehicles are greater. The infrastructure is probably going to have to be a little denser to take that into account, relatively speaking.
In rural areas you will find that many people use larger vehicles. Pickup trucks are very common, and it's not simply because folks like pickup trucks, it's because folks have heavy things to carry, large loads fairly regularly.
These are unique challenges that face rural America. And rural America is also that portion of America that really doesn't have a lot of extra money in its pocket to meet transportation costs.
So I think it's particularly appropriate that we specifically direct the Secretary to take into account the unique challenges facing rural America when it comes to transportation issues generally, and when it comes to our attempts to improve, make more efficient, make more cost efficient, make cleaner our use of transportation across the country.
I think the amendment should be noncontroversial. I certainly hope so.
I reserve the balance of my time.