The Senate last week approved a fiscal 2010 transportation and housing appropriations bill that included more than $1 billion each for rail projects and discretionary grants. Now the Senate and House, which passed its bill in July, must meet to resolve their differences over a national infrastructure bank, high-speed rail, and community development block grants.
The Senate appointed 22 members to join House members in a conference committee to craft a final bill to send to President Obama. Differences between the two bills include the House's provision allowing $2 billion to be transferred into any national infrastructure bank that is created, as well as the amount of funding for rail investments, discretionary grants, and CDBGs. The House approved its bill in July.