The National Transportation Coalition, a coalition of governors supporting surface transportation reauthorization, was launched at the National Governors Association summer meeting in Milwaukee on Aug. 3. The NGA Committee meeting focused on transportation. The recently confirmed U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx and House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee Chairman Bill Shuster (R-Pa.) spoke to the group. Shuster specifically highlighted the new coalition and former North Dakota Gov. Ed Schafer’s (R) leadership of the group in his remarks. Key themes discussed by the governors and speakers were: the need for a strong federal role in transportation; finding a long-term funding mechanism before the current law expires; increased flexibility for states and regulatory streamlining; and applying pressure on Congress when they return.
Coalition representatives held meetings with governors or staff from Colorado, Hawaii, Oklahoma, Iowa, Nebraska, Missouri, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Connecticut, Utah, Tennessee, Illinois and Arizona. Efforts are continuing to lock down one Republican and one Democratic governor as co-chairs of the coalition. NSSGA is a prime sponsor of the coalition and will continue to assist in efforts to engage the governors more actively in the effort for surface transportation reauthorization and agreement on a long-term funding source to ensure solvency and stability of the Highway Trust Fund into the future.