House on the verge of releasing a transportation bill tied to increased oil drilling

According to sources cited by numerous outlets this morning (Politico’s Morning Transportation, Transportation Issues Daily and others), the House is planning to mark up a five-year transportation bill in the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee next Thursday, February 2nd. It could be released as early as this Friday, though that date may slide somewhat into next week.

So what’s in the bill? Politico has a copy of the leaked 14-page summary, but it covers the policy only in very broad strokes, so it’s not possible to reach any sort of real conclusions about the bill just yet.

One of the most notable aspects of the bill is the proposal to raise the billions needed to cover the yawning gap in anticipated gas tax revenues with money from increased oil drilling — an intent also illustrated by the title: “The American Energy and Infrastructure Jobs Act.” The fact that the bill was written entirely by committee Republicans and tied to such a controversial new revenue source could result in a bill that gets little Democratic support in committee or on the floor.