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Barbara Boxer
Barbara Boxer (Official photo)
When President Obama talked about the jobs that might be lost if transportation funding isn't extended, he was not kidding, as a letter from Tim Johnson and Barbara Boxer to their Senate colleagues makes clear:
The Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act (SAFETEA-LU) authorizes funding for the construction of highway and transit projects. On September 30, it will expire.

IF CONGRESS DOES NOT TAKE IMMEDIATE ACTION TO PASS A SURFACE TRANSPORTATION AUTHORIZATION EXTENSION BILL BY SEPTEMBER 30, 1.8 MILLION JOBS ARE AT STAKE.

Based on U.S. Department of Transportation jobs models, the $52 billion in Federal funding provided through these programs, when matched by State and local investments, supports over 1.8 million jobs nationwide through all sectors of the economy.

They are really not messing around, as the caps lock communicates.

According to a state-by-state list of funding and the Department of Transportation's calculations of resulting jobs that would be lost, in Massachusetts, where Scott Brown will be up for reelection next year, more than 31,000 jobs are at stake. In Florida, home of House Transportation Committee Chair John Mica, who is proposing a 34 percent cut in transportation funding and was largely responsible for the recent FAA shutdown, more than 76,000 jobs could be lost if funding isn't extended.

The Hill reports that:

Boxer and Johnson want to approve a two-year measure that would fund programs at current levels, at a cost of $109 billion. Boxer, the chairwoman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, has backing from her panel’s senior Republican, Sen. James Inhofe (Okla.).

Bipartisanship is not exactly Inhofe's middle name, so hopefully he's not alone in wanting a clean extension.

Originally posted to Daily Kos Labor on Fri Sep 02, 2011 at 09:30 AM PDT.

Also republished by ClassWarfare Newsletter: WallStreet VS Working Class Global Occupy movement, Progressive Hippie, and Daily Kos.

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