WASHINGTON — U.S. Rep. Bill Shuster, a Republican from outside Altoona, will become the chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, a powerful position that could put Pennsylvania's interests out front in federal highway spending and policy.
The House Republican conference voted this afternoon to name Shuster and other committee chairmen for the 2013-14 session beginning in January. No Pennsylvania House member currently chairs a full committee.
Shuster currently chairs the subcommittee on Railroads, Pipelines, and Hazardous Materials. Shuster's father, Bud, chaired the committee from 1995 to 2001.
The 52-year-old Shuster won election earlier this month to a seventh term representing the 9th Congressional District stretching from south-central to southwestern Pennsylvania.
Pennsylvania's transportation secretary, Barry Schoch (pron. SHOKE), says Shuster has energy and character and the ability to build consensus.