U.S. Senate committee advances six-year transportation bill

A U.S. Senate committee passed a six-year transportation bill on Thursday that would keep federal spending on highways and mass transit at current levels but does not tackle the looming shortfall in the Highway Trust Fund. The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee voted to advance the legislation, which would spend about $53 billion a year and adjust for inflation, to the full Senate. It is not clear when the Senate will consider the bill. Other committees in the Senate and House of Representatives are working on ways to pump money into the trust fund, which pays for about 45 percent of what U.S. states spend on roads and bridges and is forecast to run out of money by the end of August.

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