Both the House and Senate have appointed their legislators to the Transportation Finance Conference Committee.
On the House side, Representatives Brian Dempsey, House Ways and Means Chair from x, Bill Straus, House Transportation Chair from Mattapoisett, and Republican Brian Howitt of Seekonk.
Senate Ways and Means Chair Stephen Brewer of Barre will be heading up the committee, along with Senator Thomas McGee Senate Transportation Chair from Lynn, and Assistant Majority Leader, Robert Hedlund the Republican Senator from Weymouth.
The six-member committee will attempt to reconcile two versions (H 3415/ S 1770) of a $500 million tax bill that would fund transportation. Conference committees usually, but not always, vote to conduct their deliberations in private.
Governor Deval Patrick denounced the original bill put together by House and Senate leaders and approved 97-55 by the House, threatening to veto it. The Senate padded the proposed investments in transportation in its version of the bill, drawing some praise from the Governor who said he remained concerned that the Senate plan pulls revenues from other areas of government.