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Posts by Joe Warminsky
July 21, 2014
The Port of Savannah is one point of contention in a Georgia Republican primary runoff Tuesday in which 11-term Rep. Jack Kingston vies with businessman David Perdue for the party’s Senate nomination.
Tuesday’s winner will face Democrat Michelle Nunn in November in a contest that The Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call ratings puts in the “Favored Republican” category.
This could be a decisive week for highway and bridge building if the Senate can pass a bill providing additional money for the Highway Trust Fund.
The House passed its version of the bill last week. It would keep money flowing to state transportation projects through May 2015.
July 18, 2014
The 10-month Highway Trust Fund bill that the House passed last week is hardly the first piece of legislation that features a mishmash of pay-for provisions intended to keep it from increasing the deficit. This time around, one of the primary revenue-raisers ($6.4 billion worth) is a “pension smoothing” provision.
Never heard of that accounting maneuver? CQ Roll Call’s Emma Dumain and David Harrison explain it this way: Full story
You might’ve seen us refer already to Energy Xtra, the newest Policy Pulse blog for CQ Roll Call. If you haven’t clicked through, we urge you to check it out. Written by Randy Leonard, a longtime reporter on energy and environment issues, the blog will track several issues of direct interest to readers of The Container, including the fossil fuel supply, energy infrastructure and gas taxes. Full story
The Federal Aviation Administration has banned U.S. flight operations over eastern Ukraine after a Malaysia Airlines plane with 298 people on board was shot down in that airspace on Thursday.
Meanwhile on its Twitter account Friday morning, the National Transportation Safety Board said it would “send 1+ investigator to Ukraine. Details TBD. Response will be guided by events as they unfold.”
President Barack Obama tried to focus attention this week on public-private partnerships to build infrastructure. Despite the existence of well-established “P3″ projects — concentrated in Texas, Florida, Virginia, California, and Colorado — the public is still sometimes confused about what’s public and what’s private.
July 17, 2014
The United States has not sent an ambassador to the U.N. International Civil Aviation Organization, which has, in the past, investigated air disasters like the one Thursday in which a Malaysia Airlines passenger jet reportedly was shot down along the Ukraine/Russia border.
July 15, 2014
The U.S. airline industry has made a commitment to reduce emissions by moving to using biofuels to supplement and perhaps eventually replace petroleum-based jet fuel.
The industry — which accounts for 2 percent of man-made carbon dioxide emissions in this country — has committed to “carbon neutral growth” from 2020 onward. That means after 2020 finding ways to offset emissions even as the airline industry flies more miles and serves a bigger population.
So will you be flying from Los Angeles to New York on a biofueled flight in the next 20 years?
Former Rep. Robert A. Roe, D-N.J., who once said his congressional career included public works “from the sewers to the stars,” died Tuesday, according to the Bergen Record. Roe rose to the chairmanship of what was then known as the Public Works and Transportation Committee in 1991 before retiring after the 1992 election.
July 14, 2014
On Tuesday the National Transportation Safety Board will meet to determine the probable cause of the collapse on May 23, 2013, of a bridge on Interstate 5 spanning the Skagit River in Washington State.
The bridge is a major thoroughfare for truck and tourism traffic between Canada and the United States, with more than 71,000 drivers using it daily. Was this another case study in America’s aging infrastructure and the need for more federal transportation spending?
CQ Roll Call has launched Healthopolis, another Policy Pulse blog to join Five by Five, Technocrat and The Container. Written by Paul Jenks, it will be a platform for health policy news “from the capital and beyond.” Jenks has already posted at least one item of potential interest to readers of The Container, about how the Senate Finance patch for the Highway Trust Fund includes an expansion of the IRS’s authority to go after tax delinquent Medicare providers and suppliers.
July 11, 2014
Another front in the car service battle has opened at the nation’s airports
The Airport Ground Transportation Association – which includes SuperShuttle and similar airport shuttle services — issued a warning this week that Uber and Lyft are exposing airport authorities to liability risk.
July 10, 2014
July 7, 2014
Highway Trust Fund Talks, Hearing on Outer Continental Shelf, and ‘Intelligent Compaction’ on Week’s Agenda
This week the biggest event in transportation policy could come from the chairmen of the Senate Finance Committee and House Ways and Means Committee if they reach agreement on revenue-raising measures to refill the Highway Trust Fund until the end of the year, or at least until after Election Day.
When we left this drama on June 26, Senate Finance Committee Chairman Sen. Ron Wyden, D –Ore., suspended his committee’s markup of a bill to provide new financing for the fund while he and Ways and Means Committee Chairman Rep. Dave Camp, R-Mich., tried to find common ground.
June 25, 2014
Senators voiced frustration Wednesday that the Federal Aviation Administration is implementing the NextGen air traffic control modernization too slowly.
Sen. Maria Cantwell, chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee’s Aviation Subcommittee, stressed at a hearing that NextGen has great potential — saving 1.6 billion gallons of fuel by 2020. But she said the FAA isn’t getting the job done quickly enough.