New US freight bill ignores highways: ATA

WASHINGTON – America’s umbrella trucking group is opposing new legislation that would set a national freight transportation policy.

The American Trucking Associations is concerned that the FREIGHT Act of 2010 does not include funding for highways beyond limited connectors to freight terminals.

The bill was introduced last week by Sen. Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey, who chairs the Surface Transportation Subcommittee of the Senate Commerce Committee.

The FREIGHT Act of 2010 would provide the U.S. its first official freight policy. It would provide a framework for freight investment and planning, and set goals such as reducing delays at international points of entry, making transit times along freight corridors more reliable, improving safety and reducing air pollution.

Critics in the trucking industry also argue that the proposal, and other initiatives like it, promote the transfer of freight away from trucks and onto other supposedly fuel efficient modes like rail and marine.

The ATA insists the legislation does not remedy the highway funding crisis that a long-overdue highway reauthorization bill should address.

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