This is the seventh article in a series of ten articles titled “To Strengthen America” with the purpose of educating the general public regarding ten bills currently being considered by our Nation’s congress. These ten bills were highlighted in the 2014 Conservative Policy Summit.


HR 3486, S1702


The Transportation Empowerment Act HR 3486 was introduced by Rep. Tom Graves of Georgia on 14th of November 2013 and was referred to the Subcommittee on Highways and Transit and has 39 cosponsors.

The related Senate bill by the same name, S 1702 was introduced by Senator Mike Lee of Utah on the same day. So far the Senate bill has only four cosponsors and has been referred to the committee on Finance. I have read both bills and they are identical.


House bill:

Senate bill:


These bills reduce the Federal taxes on fuels and give the power of regulation to the states. Here is a nonpartisan summary written by the Congressional Research Service of the Library of Congress—


Transportation Empowerment Act

  • Declares the purposes of the Act, including returning maximum discretionary authority and fiscal responsibility to the states for all elements of the national surface transportation systems (excluding the Dwight D. Eisenhower National System of Interstate and Defense Highways).
  • Prescribes a limitation on funding of transportation programs and projects carried out under this Act.
  • Authorizes appropriations out of the Highway Trust Fund (HTF) (other than the Mass Transit Account) for FY2015-FY2019 for specified core programs under the federal-aid highway program, including: (1) metropolitan transportation planning, (2) emergency relief for highways and roads, (3) the federal lands transportation program, and (4) Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) administrative expenses.
  • Authorizes a state to transfer and use excess federal-aid highway funds for any surface transportation project (including mass transit and rail).
  • Limits federal assistance to states for highway bridge replacement and rehabilitation to bridges on the federal-aid highway system. Repeals the authorization of federal assistance to states for historic bridges.
  • Repeals the transportation alternatives program.
  • Declares that, beginning with FY2014, a highway construction or improvement project shall not be considered a federal project: (1) unless and until a state expends federal funds for the construction portion of such project, (2) solely by reason of the state expenditure of federal funds before the construction phase of the project (including for any environmental document or design work), or (3) upon state reimbursement to the federal government of the federal costs of such projects.
  • Amends the Internal Revenue Code to make amounts in the HTF available for expenditure for core highway programs through FY2020.
  • Requires the Secretary of Treasury to transfer from the HTF amounts equivalent to motorboat and aviation fuel taxes collected before October 1, 2022, to: (1) the Land and Water Conservation Fund, (2) the Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund, and (3) the Airport and Airway Trust Fund.
  • Requires the Secretary to pay from the HTF into the general fund of the Treasury amounts equivalent to the floor stocks refunds made before July 1, 2023.
  • Prescribes a motor fuel tax rate schedule for financing of core highway programs.
  • Terminates, on September 30, 2014, the authority of the Secretary to make certain transfers to the Mass Transit Account. Directs the Secretary, on October 1, 2014, to transfer all amounts in the Mass Transit Account to the Highway Account.
  • Authorizes appropriations out of the HTF (other than the Mass Transit Account) for FY2015-FY2019 for the highway research and development program.
  • Directs the Secretary to allocate to the states for surface transportation projects (including mass transit and rail) any excess highway tax receipts appropriated to the HTF in FY2016-FY2019.
  • Reduces the excise taxes imposed on: (1) gasoline from 18.3 cents to 3.7 cents, (2) diesel fuel or kerosene from 24.3 cents to 5.0 cents, and (3) diesel-water fuel emulsion from 19.7 cents to 4.1 cents. Requires credits or refunds of certain floor stocks taxes on liquids imposed before October 1, 2019.
  • Declares that this Act shall become effective only if the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) certifies that it is deficit neutral.”


I think that this would be a good thing for the country. It means less Federal oversight and fewer taxes. I personally know some truck drivers that would like to pay fewer taxes on their fuel. If you also feel that this bill needs the support of your states congressmen then tell them so.


Read more on this issue:


Check out the previous six articles of “To Strengthen America” written by me, Reneta Adamson, at