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U.S. Transportation Department furloughs 3,700 workers

WASHINGTON, Oct 1 (Reuters) – The U.S. Transportation Department mentioned 3,700 workers had been quickly furloughed after Congress didn’t reauthorize floor transportation applications earlier than a deadline that expired early on Friday.

A division spokesperson mentioned the company is “taking every step we can to mitigate the impacts of this temporary lapse in authorization” of the Highway Trust Fund.

Safety-critical workers are exempt from the furloughs. Aides mentioned U.S. lawmakers are contemplating a 30-day floor transportation extension as negotiations proceed over a pair of infrastructure and spending payments.

The American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) mentioned on Friday that $50 billion of federal floor transportation applications supported by the Highway Trust Fund are being suspended.

“It lapses our highway, transit, and highway safety programs and halts work on vital transportation infrastructure around the country, which is detrimental to our economy and the quality of life of our communities,” Jim Tymon, AASHTO’s executive director, said in a statement. “This is unacceptable.”

Reporting by David Shepardson in Washington
Editing by Matthew Lewis

A worker enters a transportation department federal building in Washington October 1, 2013.  REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque