Harrisburg, July 31, 2013 – Today state Sen. Jim Brewster (D-Allegheny/Westmoreland) and other members of the Senate Transportation Committee criticized the House of Representatives for its failure to pass a comprehensive transportation funding bill.

In June, the Senate passed a $2.5 billion transportation bill in hopes of adequately funding Pennsylvania’s failing bridges and roadways as well as a struggling public transit system. Senate Bill 1 did not receive enough House support to pass.

Brewster said legislators in the House were not focused enough on the safety of Pennsylvanians. Some members of the House politicized the common sense bill and compared mass transit to welfare, he said.

“How can you make a comment like that? What planet are you from?” asked Brewster.

Brewster also expressed concern for the nearly 600 employees who would be affected by the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission’s reform plan. He urged the commission’s leaders to use the next few years wisely and to keep employees a priority during the changes.

“We must properly fund transportation, or our infrastructure will continue to fail Pennsylvanians,” Brewster said. “We can no longer afford the consequences.”

The Senate Transportation Committee will hold public hearings on transportation funding in Pittsburgh, Erie, Altoona, Lehigh and Philadelphia in the coming months.


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