FAIRFIELD COUNTY, Conn. – Senate passage of the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act — better known as the FAST Act — will bring over $3.5 billion in federal funds for Connecticut's roads and rails.
U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) applauded the five-year $305 billion transportation bill – the first long-term highway bill in a decade.
It preserves critical funding sources for Connecticut, revives the expired Export-Import Bank, and strengthens Buy American provisions.
“This bill is a big win for Connecticut commuters, who are fed up with the amount of lost time they spend in traffic and on platforms waiting for trains," Murphy said last week. "This bill puts significant new money toward our roadways and railroads, and that’s a big win for Connecticut.
"The bill represents $236 million more for Connecticut roads than the current highway bill. It also means spending $5 million more than we currently do on transit service, over the life of the bill.
“It’s $3.5 billion for Connecticut over five years and it’s about $350 million more than what we would have gotten. The legislature made a substantial commitment to improving our roadways and rail lines. We are on the verge of a transformation of Connecticut’s infrastructure.”
Highlights of the FAST Act for Connecticut for the next five years:
The state will get $236 million more than current spending levels for highway funds over the life of the bill.
The state will also get $75 million more than current spending levels for transit funds over the life of the bill.
“I’ve heard from hundreds of Connecticut residents that they’re fed up with their commute and the state of our transportation system. They’re fed up with missing dinners with their families and their kids’ sports games. They’re fed up with talk but no real progress,” said Murphy. “This bill isn't perfect, but it will significantly increase transportation funding for Connecticut, and give our state Department of Transportation certainty about funding levels for five years."
This bill also includes the reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank, which is critical for job growth in Connecticut, Murphy said, "and it doesn't blow a hole in our federal budget by spending more than it takes in."