House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman Bud Shuster
(R-Pa.) introduced legislation, H.R. 3566, which would take the maritime trust funds "off budget." Unlike previous legislation which dealt with trust funds in the highway, aviation and maritime areas, this bill only covers the Inland Waterways Trust Fund and the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund.
Introduction of the "maritime only" bill is seen as an indication of Chairman Shuster's intent to deal with the issue in his committee this year. In his introductory floor statement, Chairman Shuster was clear on the needs of the nation's water transportation infrastructure and his support for continued investment in that infrastructure. He also noted changes to the budgeting process for the Inland Waterways Trust Fund will
"need to be discussed with the varius constituencies involved in inland waterways transportation."