February 6, 2008
(Remarks as prepared for delivery)
Last week we heard testimony from members of the National Surface Transportation Policy and Revenue Study Commission regarding their recently released report.
Commissioners spoke about the need for significant investment in our nation's surface transportation system and fundamental reform of Federal transportation programs.
The Commission also called for the Federal government to take a lead role in addressing transportation challenges facing our nation today and those expected in the future.
I appreciate all the hard work and many hours the Commission and its staff devoted to their report. The recommendations contained within it provide a starting point for our discussions of the next highway, transit and highway safety authorization.
Today's hearing is a continuation of last week's hearing.
We will hear from Secretary Peters regarding the Administration's views on the Commission's report. Although Secretary Peters chaired the Commission, she did not vote in favor of the final report that was produced.
Nevertheless, I thank her for all of the time and effort she spent working with the Commission.
I would also point out that, even though the report was not unanimously approved, there are several recommendations on which all 12 Commissioners do agree.
On the second panel, we will hear from representatives of the states, the business community, and highway users, as well as the Government Accountability Office regarding their views on the Commission's recommendations.
I thank all of the witnesses for being here today and for sharing their insights with us.