Tuesday the House Appropriations Committee published a committee draft of the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development and Associated Agencies (THUD) spending bill for FY 2015 on their web site. There does not appear to be any special funding for studying or improving the safety of crude oil transportation by rail included in the bill. The Committee summary of the bill does note, however, that:
“Also included is $205.2 million for the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, an increase of $19.4 million over the fiscal year 2014 enacted level, to help address a variety of safety concerns, including those related to the transport of crude oil, coal, and other hazardous substances.”
Funding for the Federal Railroad Administration, on the other hand, has been reduced by $193 million from last year’s appropriation. Safety and research funding has been increased by $750,000, but it appears to be targeted at passenger safety not crude oil transportation issues.
The markup process started yesterday with a markup hearing by the Transportation, and Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies Subcommittee. There is no public information available about the results of that hearing; in fact, there is no mention of the hearing on the House Appropriations Committee web site.