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American society and american political institutions

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Unformatted text preview: nates transportation policy Dilger 2011, -Senior Spet in American National Government (Robert Jay, “Federalism Issues in Surface Transportation Policy: Past and Present”, 1 -5-11, Congressional Research Service) American federalism, which shapes the roles, responsibilities, and interactions among and between the federal government, the states, and local governments, is continuously evolving, adapting to changes in American society and American political institutions. The nature of federalism relationships in surface transportation policy has also evolved over time, with the federal government’s role becoming increasingly influential, especially since the Federal-Aid to Highway Act of 1956 which authorized the interstate highway system. In recent years, state and local government officials, through their public interest groups (especially the National Governors Association, National Conference of State Legislatures, National Association of Counties, National League of Cities, U.S. Conference of Mayors, and American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials) have lobbied for increased federal assistance for surface transportation grants and increased flexibility in the use of those funds. They contend that they are better able to identify surface transportation needs in their states than federal officials and are capable of administering federal grant funds with relatively minimal federal oversight. They also argue that states have a long history of learning from one another. In their view, providing states flexibility in the use of federal funds results in better surface transportation policy because it enables states to experiment with innovative solutions to surface transportation problems and then share their experiences with other states. Others argue that the federal government has a responsibility to ensure that federal funds are used in the most efficient and effective manner possible to promote the national interest in expanding national economic growth and protecting the environment. In their view, providing states increased flexibility in the use of federal funds diminishes the federal government’s ability t o ensure that national needs are met. Still others have argued for a fundamental restructuring of federal and state government responsibilities in surface transportation policy, with some responsibilities devolved to states and others remaining with the federal government. 34 | P a g e Mass Transit Affirmative BDL Answers to: States CP [____] [____] Transportation equity is a moral obligation that the federal government is responsible for Thomas W Sanchez, chair of the Department of City and Metropolitan Planning at the University of Utah, 2010 (Poverty & Race 19.4, "Transportation and Civil Rights", http://search.proquest.com/docview/744192726) Transportation infrastructure can displace residents and permanently damage community structure and integrity. Both the construction and operation of infrastructure c...
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