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A Look at the History of the Federal Highway Administration
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February 28
1919 The Post Office Appropriation Act, signed by President Woodrow Wilson today, amends the Federal Aid Road Act of 1916 in an attempt to correct defects that had hampered the success of the program. It broadens the definition of "rural post road," increases the maximum amount of Federal funding to $20,000 per mile, and increases funding. In addition, the Act authorizes the Secretary of Agriculture to distribute World War I equipment, through BPR, to the States for road improvement.
1961 President John F. Kennedy's Special Message to Congress warns that, "Our Federal Pay-As-You-Go Highway Program" is "in peril." Citing "the vital contribution this [Interstate] program makes to our security, our safety, and our economic growth," he discusses the need for additional funds to complete the program on schedule. His message leads to the Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1961. (See June 29, 1961.)
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