News & AnalysisU.S. Congress

Research Projects Could Be Roadkill in Revision of Massive Highway Bill

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Science  18 Nov 2011:
Vol. 334, Issue 6058, pp. 884
DOI: 10.1126/science.334.6058.884

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Since 1992, a federal program that funds transportation-related projects in the 50 states has provided more than $51 million to archaeological projects and more than $100 million to environmental restoration projects and studies aimed at preventing deadly collisions with wildlife. But that funding stream is now threatened, as Congress debates the value of the Transportation Enhancements Program (TEP). Last week, a U.S. Senate committee made the first move, significantly modifying the program as part of a plan to reauthorize the government's $50-billion-a-year surface transport funding system. But TEP faces serious opposition in the House of Representatives from lawmakers who consider it to be wasteful and unnecessary spending.