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House passes bill to keep highway aid flowing
House bill would keep highway aid flowing to states; Senate action needed to avoid work pause
By The Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) ' The House has passed a stopgap three-month transportation bill to keep federal aid flowing to construction projects.

The bill was passed Thursday largely along party lines after Republicans and Democrats traded verbal jabs over how best to prevent economic disruption.

The House action means the Senate must pass the same measure before Saturday to avoid a shutdown of the projects. That's when the government's authority to spend money on transportation programs and levy federal fuel taxes expires.

The House planned to begin a two-week recess Thursday.

Without action, Democrats estimate that as many as 1.8 million construction-related jobs would be at risk just as states are preparing for the spring and summer construction season. The government could also lose about $110 million a day in uncollected gas and diesel taxes.

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