Today’s Pickup: Bipartisan group seeks Highway Trust Fund fix

Construction

Good day.

A group of more than 250 House lawmakers are pushing for any tax reform package to include a permanent fix to the Highway Trust Fund. The group, which includes 119 Republicans, sent a letter to the House Ways and Means Committee on Monday, asking for a fix.

“If states are unable to rely on timely reimbursements from the HTF for performed work, projects will be halted, improvements to road safety and congestion relief will be jeopardized, and America’s infrastructure will fall further behind the rest of the world,” the letter stated, according to The Hill.

The Highway Trust Fund is currently funded through 2020. The money in it, which is derived primarily from fuel taxes, is used to reimburse states for infrastructure projects.

Did you know?

Between 1990 and 1993, the federal fuel tax was increased a total of 9.4 cents per gallon. Of that increase, 6.9 cents was earmarked for deficit reduction rather than funding infrastructure projects. A 1997 bill eventually redirected 4.4 cents to the Highway Trust Fund.

Quotable:

“The president has made rebuilding our transportation network a priority, and rightfully so. But, instead of thinking a one-time, trillion-dollar investment would solve our infrastructure problems, my focus is on making sure we’re being responsible in how we plan for and fund projects in the future.”

- Rep. Sam Graves, R-Mo.

In other news:

Trump to push apprenticeships

President Donald Trump is calling on businesses and colleges to boost their efforts to create apprenticeships for younger workers, providing a path into the workforce. (Washington Post)

Companies stay course with health plans

According to a new PwC survey, large employers intend to continue offering comprehensive and improving health insurance plans to employees regardless of what the federal government decides to do with Obamacare simply because, they say, it’s a good way to retain talented employees. (CNBC)

Roadrunner Freight president to leave company

Grant Crawford, president of Roadrunner Freight, the LTL carrier of Roadrunner Transportation Systems, is leaving the company. (Transport Topics)

Manufacturing, logistics continue growing

Improved efficiencies within manufacturing and logistics are leading to record production levels for U.S. manufacturers, even if the number of jobs remain stagnant. (Inbound Logistics)

Britain’s Brexit impact being felt in supply chain

Doe a country’s cheaper currency boost its exports and therefore GDP? That has always been the belief, but a look at what is happening in Britain following the Brexit vote is challenging that assumption. (Wall Street Journal)

Final Thoughts

Bipartisan support for fixing the funding issues that have plagued the Highway Trust Fund is a great show of bipartisanship, but whether that continues when it comes time to actually draw up a funding plan is another story.

Hammer down everyone!