Senate Ratifies Surface and Air Transportation Act Extension

The Senate voted 92 – 6 to ratify HR 2887, the Surface and Air Transportation Programs Extension Act of 2011. The $25.6 billion measure was passed in the House by a simple voice vote, and the Senate passed it without amendment. The initial sponsor of the bill, Republican John Mica (FL-7), argued it was past time that the continuing appropriations for various transportation programs and agencies be enacted, as this was the 22nd time an extension has been passed by Congress since the initial act in 2007. The bill extends funding for the programs and agencies till January 31, 2012, at which time the funding may be included in an omnibus spending bill for FY 2012.

The six votes against the bill came from Republican Senators Tom Coburn (OK), Jim DeMint (SC), Ron Johnson (WI), Mike Lee (UT), Rand Paul (KY), and Pat Toomey (PA).

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