President signs Transportation Appropriations Act

| Thursday, December 20, 2001

On Dec. 18, President Bush signed into law HR 2299, the Department of Transportation and Related Agencies Appropriations Act. The bill appropriates $60 billion in transportation funding for fiscal year 2002. Importantly, the bill permits Mexican trucks access to U.S. highways provided they meet strict safety standards.

The bill appropriates $140 million for border safety measures. Implementing the rules, however, is expected to take months.

In other key initiatives, the bill appropriates $5 billion for Coast Guard operations and capital expenses, including $243 million to support expanded drug interdiction efforts as authorized in the Western Hemisphere Drug Elimination Act; $1.2 billion for the newly created Transportation Security Administration to enhance airport and aircraft security; $32.8 billion for key highway infrastructure and safety initiatives in compliance with authorized levels; $10.2 billion for aviation operations and airport improvement grants to expand safety, security, and capacity; and $6.7 billion for mass transit grants and capital programs.

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