HONOLULU (KHON2) — U.S. Senator Brian Schatz of Hawai’i wrote a provision in President’s Joe Biden’s bipartisan infrastructure deal, which was signed into law last week.

According to Schatz, that provision extended the deadline for $493 million in grant funding for the Honolulu Rail Transit project. The federal funds, a portion of the $1.55 billion federal grant for the project, were set to expire at the end of the year if left unspent.

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Schatz said he worked with congressional leaders to include the deadline extension and protect the project’s federal funding for another two years.

“My objective was to prevent the loss of these federal dollars,” Senator Schatz said. “While the extension buys them more time, HART and the City still need to update their financial plan and come back with something that can actually work. They now have an opportunity to focus on what is more important — developing a clear-eyed plan for the people of Honolulu,” Schatz said.

Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development.