Senator Joseph Lieberman (I-CT) released the following statement after the passage of H.R.4348, the Transportation Reauthorization Conference Report:
"This transportation bill is a reminder that legislating is an exercise in compromise. I am glad that the bill will fund transportation networks across Connecticut while reducing waste, but I am disappointed that it contains several harmful provisions: it waives too many environmental reviews, provides inadequate funds to meet Connecticut's transportation needs, and does nothing to address the growing deficit in our Highway Trust Fund. Unfortunately, it also lacks funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund. Despite my serious misgivings, I ultimately voted for this bill because if it did not pass, millions of construction workers would be out of work, students would see interest rates double, and the National Flood Insurance Program would lapse."
This legislation will provide Connecticut with more than $977 million in federal highway funds through September 2014, consolidate existing government programs, and enforce provisions similar to those proposed by Senator Lieberman and Senator Carper (D-DE) to improve air quality in cities across the country.
The bill would also defer student loan interest rates from doubling, from 3.4% to 6.8%, for an additional year, while ensuring that property holders continue to have the opportunity to purchase affordable flood coverage through the NFIP.