Road projects threatened as bill stalls in Congress
A transportation bill has stalled in the United States Congress, threatening road repairs in New York State. Many repairs to highways are paid for using federal funds allotted by Congress. Now, legislative gridlock is delaying attempts to pass a bill worth some $109 billion, intended to fund infrastructure like road resurfacing and bridge replacement.
As usual, Sen. Chuck Schumer weighed in on the matter. “Investing in our roads and bridges should be a bipartisan no-brainer, and we have to get it done quickly,” he said in a statement. He then identified over 130 projects in our region that could benefit from the federal money. Although it might seem that local governments only have to wait until the funds are awarded, experts say that road repairs are urgent and must be done in a timely manner to keep damage from destroying important infrastructure. “It’s not just easing congestion, that’s also safety and preventative maintenance. We have limited windows where we can do preventative maintenance, then it’s full scale reconstruction,” Rich Perrin told reporters Perrin is Executive Director of the Genesee Transportation Council, a non-profit organization that assists governments in planning roadway repairs.
Republicans had previously proposed a $260 billion transport bill that included funding for energy related projects and offended Democrats with proposals to open up expended drilling operations in the United States. Senate Democrats then proposed the current bill, which was then rejected by the House.
Niagara Falls tightrope walk plan moves forward
Acrobat Nik Wallenda says that negotiations in planning for a summer walk across Niagara Falls are moving forward. The daredevil Floridian is meeting with Niagara Falls New York authorities today to hammer out further details of the stunt. Training for the walk will start in about one month. The walk, which was first proposed over the winter, has generated global buzz and is planned as a spectacle to build tourism for Western New York.
Mostly cloudy skies today with a high in the middle 70s. A chance of rain tonight, with lows around 50.