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  • transportation

    Steering Transportation Policy: Empower People and the States, Not Washington

    Alfonse D’Amato, a long-time former Republican Senator from New York, reveled in his nickname: Senator Pothole. “It means you’re attentive and you’re there and available,” he told New York magazine. Perhaps. But if you discovered a pothole, would you really dial up a U.S. Senator? Yes, there’s a federal Department … More

    Ryan Budget’s Transportation Takeaway: Give States More Flexibility and Control

    Why does House Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan’s (R–WI) budget proposal matter to you? Because it would empower citizens and state and local governments, not remote Washington bureaucrats, to solve the transportation problems—think traffic congestion—that they deal with daily. A crucial reform proposal in the budget involves how transportation projects … More

    Latest Jones Act Fiasco Costs New Jersey Taxpayers $700,000

    A federal law called the Jones Act recently prevented New Jersey officials from treating dangerous roads with salt. Faced with a shortage of salt, state officials asked the federal government to let them transport salt on a foreign vessel in time to prepare for an approaching winter storm. Federal bureaucrats … More

    The Policy Solution That Could Help You Spend Less Time Stuck in Traffic

    States—not Washington—best understand their transportation problems and how to solve them. House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R–WI) recently expressed this fact at the 2014 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC). Describing Sen. Mike Lee (R–UT) and Rep. Tom Graves’ (R–GA) Transportation Empowerment Act (TEA) proposal, Ryan explained, “They want to … More

    Obama’s Massive 'Unified' Transportation Plan Would Hurt Commuters, Businesses

    If you set aside $50,000 dollars for your child’s college education, would you want to be forced to give a large portion of that money to pay for the college costs of someone else’s child? If you bought a new car, would you want to have to let your roommate—who … More

    Obama's Heavy-Duty Audacity

    President Obama grabbed headlines this week for (supposedly) bypassing Congress to advance his global warming agenda. As part of what aides characterize as a “muscular and unilateral campaign” to reduce greenhouse gases, the President directed his Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and his Department of Transportation (DOT) to tighten fuel-efficiency standards … More

    Obama Changes His Rhetoric, Not His Liberal Prescriptions

    In terms of substantive policy, President Barack Obama’s latest State of the Union Address contained little of interest. The President offered up more of the same, tired “concrete, practical proposals” we’ve been hearing for years: raising the minimum wage, creating manufacturing hubs, improving job training, and investing more in early … More

    It's Good to Be the Budget Chairman: Patty Murray's Omni-BUS Carve-Out

    At least one special favor is hiding deep in the omnibus—giving one county’s government-subsidized transit system the advantage over private transportation. Buried on page 1,460 of the fiscal year (FY) 2014 omnibus spending bill that the House just passed is a carve-out that shields just one federally subsidized transit system … More

    Phones on Airplanes: FCC Moves to Lift Rules

    Something unusual is happening at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). At a meeting earlier this afternoon, the commission—led by Obama-appointed chairman Tom Wheeler—voted to review the FCC ban on using cell phones on airplanes. This is the first step to repeal, which Wheeler supports. The move has caused bipartisan consternation … More

    Budget Conference Spending Cuts: Start with Amtrak Subsidies

    A good place for budget conferees to start cutting federal spending would be at Amtrak, the federally subsidized passenger rail service, with its $72 million loss on its food and beverage service in fiscal year (FY) 2012 and generally poor financial performance. Amtrak’s inspector general Ted Alves states in a … More