$28 Million to Central Florida Thanks to Murphy Efforts on Transportation Bill
WASHINGTON – The first transportation bill to pass the House of Representatives this session includes over $28 million in funding for eight central Florida projects, thanks to the efforts of Rep. Stephanie Murphy.
The Winter Park Democrat said she pushed for the inclusion of the projects in the INVEST in America Act to promote smoother and safer transportation, increase economic activity, promote tourism and create good-paying jobs in the area.
“Central Florida is one of the fastest growing regions in the country, and I’m incredibly proud to secure these important infrastructure investments for our region,” Murphy said following the vote.
The House approved the Invest in America Act on Thursday 221-201, a largely party line vote despite the fact the bill included earmarks proposed by Republican members that would benefit their districts.
The measure would dedicate $343 billion to roads, bridges and safety, $109 billion to transit, and $95 billion to passenger and freight rail. It would also commit $117 billion to drinking water infrastructure and over $51 billion to wastewater infrastructure.
Passage of the bill comes just a week after a bipartisan group of senators reached a deal with President Joe Biden on a proposed $579 billion infrastructure package.
The open question now is whether the House and Senate will now go to conference to reconcile the differences between the bipartisan bill and the surface transportation bill.
Rep. Peter DeFazio, chair of the House Transportation Committee and author of the House bill declined to answer the question earlier this week, pointing out that the details of the Senate proposal have not been released.
Describing the bipartisan deal as “an outline,” DeFazio told reporters he believes negotiators could “work out spending levels,” but there is still no actual policy attached to the Senate proposal.
As for the Murphy-led projects in the Invest in America Act, they include:
Additionally, the bill also includes Murphy-led projects to:
- Re-design historic downtown Longwood to add pedestrian and bicycle facilities, and improve stormwater management along West Warren Avenue.
- Create a new pedestrian bridge that will connect the Little Econ Greenway and the Cady Way Trail, creating a safer way to cross State Road 436.
- Fill gaps in the sidewalk along the south side of Southcot Drive in Casselberry, improving pedestrian safety and access to different areas.
- Construct and improve turning lanes, relocate utility and light poles, and improve pedestrian signals around the intersection of University Boulevard and Dean Road.
- Expand and modernize 2.6 miles of a trail/shared use path at the E.E. Williamson Road Trail Connect as well as improve the existing Seminole Wekiva Trail System.
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