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Congress Reauthorizes Funding for Safe Routes to School

April 20, 2010

Congress has passed the long-term transportation extension through December 2010, meaning that the federal Safe Routes to School program will be funded at the FY2009 level of $183 million throughout the remainder of FY2010 and the first quarter of FY2011. 

The Federal Highway Administration should be issuing the memo within a few weeks that gives states their exact apportionments for all transportation programs. Once the memo has been issued, the Partnership will be working with state and local advocates to ensure that state Departments of Transportation make plans to hold new SRTS grant cycles that will put the newly available funds to good use in schools and communities across the country.

Senator Boxer, chair of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, has also publicly stated that she wants to move forward on the full transportation reauthorization bill this year. The Committee has started holding more hearings, and staff is starting to work on drafting legislation. It is important that advocates continue to contact their Senators to ask for their support of S. 1156, the Safe Routes to School Program Reauthorization Act. Fortunately, we are now up to 22 Senators in support, with Senator Murray (D-WA) the latest addition. In the House, during the National Bike Summit bike advocates were successful in getting 16 new sponsors for H.R. 4021, the Safe Routes to High Schools Act, bringing the total supporters to 39 Representatives.