Rep. Titus Introduces the Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Modernization Act

May 13, 2020
Press Release

May 13, 2020

Washington, DC – Today Representative Dina Titus of Nevada’s First Congressional District – a senior Member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee – introduced the Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Modernization Act. The legislation will update and improve the formula used to distribute funds under the National Highway Program to states and localities like Clark County with air quality challenges.

This legislation would be the first major update to the Congestion Mitigation Air Quality (CMAQ) Improvement program since its inception in 1991. The bill would ensure that CMAQ resources are directed to communities with the greatest need for air pollution mitigation funding by updating the disbursement formula to include current population data and recent EPA air pollution monitoring data for fine particulate matter and ozone pollution.

The American Lung Association released its “State of the Air” report in April of 2020 and graded Clark County with an “F.” Under this legislation, the state of Nevada could see a $23.2 million annual increase in funds for congestion mitigation efforts. Recent research from Harvard University suggests that long-term exposure to low air quality increases the COVID-19 death rate.

In recent years CMAQ resources have been used to help fund local projects and initiatives including replacing the RTC fleet with cleaner, compressed natural gas buses; advancing the Maryland Parkway Bus Rapid Transit Project planning and design; and building sections of the CC215 Bike/Pedestrian Trail Project.

“I’m introducing this legislation to improve the air quality in communities like Clark County,” said Congresswoman Titus (NV-1). “Reducing air pollution can be the difference between life and death – especially among COVID-19 patients and some of our most vulnerable citizens. We need to update this vital program to make sure that it targets the communities that need the most relief.”