Transportation

South Dakota’s wide open spaces mean the nearest hospital or airport can be many miles away. Without question, adequate federal funding and the stability provided by a long-term federal policy ensures that eligible highways and bridges are properly maintained. This investment helps keep roads safe for South Dakota families and ensures efficient movement of goods and people that are vital to a host of South Dakota industries, including agriculture and tourism.

Since being elected to Congress, I have been a strong advocate for infrastructure funding to ensure South Dakota’s transportation needs are met.

For four years, beginning in January 2015, I had the privilege of serving as chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, which has direct oversight over the U.S. Department of Transportation, among many other federal agencies.

The committee oversees various modes of transportation, including the Federal Aviation Administration, the Transportation Security Administration, and the U.S. Coast Guard, which are all critical for interstate commerce to function. It also oversees various transportation safety and regulatory bodies, including the Federal Railroad Administration, National Transportation Safety Board, Surface Transportation Board, and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), again, among others.

On December 4, 2015, the bipartisan Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act was signed into law, which contains several transportation and safety initiatives I sponsored that benefit South Dakota, including provisions that lead to increased highway investment levels in South Dakota, relief for hours of service regulations for truck drivers transporting bees or livestock, and rewards for states like South Dakota for its innovative 24/7 sobriety program. 

On October 5, 2018, the Federal Aviation Administration Reauthorization Act of 2018 was signed into law. The bill will help modernize airport infrastructure, better protect consumers, enhance transportation safety and security, and boost innovation in the aviation industry.