WASHINGTON, DC— U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) today introduced two bills aimed at utilizing federal money allocated to highway projects that remains unspent. Recent reports indicate that almost one in three dollars earmarked for highway projects since 1991 remain unspent, totaling $13 billion nationwide and $392 million in Pennsylvania.
“This legislation will ensure that funding already directed toward highway projects is put to good use, improving our roads and bridges and creating more construction jobs,” said Senator Casey. “This legislation will help Pennsylvania move forward on critical highway projects and relieve the financial burden these unspent funds are causing the state.”
The Redistribution of Unspent Earmarks Act will require any earmarks that are over three years old and not obligated to a specific project to be returned to the state transportation department with jurisdiction over the project, allowing the money to be spent on other federally approved projects.
The Use It or Lose It Act will require congressionally directed funding from the Highway Trust Fund to be obligated for a project no later than 3 years after the funds were first made available. If funds are not obligated in that time frame, they will be released to the state transportation department which will then be able to direct it toward other federally approved transportation projects in that state.