The chief executive officer of the Associated General Contractors of America, Stephen E. Sandherr, issued the following statement in response to the Obama administration’s release of proposed surface transportation legislation that would provide an estimated $302 billion for highway, bridge and transit construction over a four-year period:
"The administration’s proposed transportation bill should accelerate debate and action on a new highway and transit bill before the current legislation expires at the end of September. This new proposal demonstrates the administration’s intent to play an active role in advocating for timely legislative action to ensure our continued economic vitality. As important, the proposal sets a clear marker that any new legislation must span, at a minimum, four years and increase investment levels.
"The proposal also firmly establishes the need to identify a dedicated way to pay for needed repairs to our aging network of roads, bridges and transit systems. While there is likely to be debate as more details become available about the administration’s preferred funding option, Congress and the president need to work together to develop a timely funding solution before the federal Highway Trust Fund hits a zero balance this summer.
"Moving forward, we will continue to play an aggressive role, in pushing Congress to avoid a surface transportation funding shortfall this summer and pass a new highway and transit bill by September. Through our co-leadership of the Transportation Construction Coalition, thousands of our members and their employees have already contacted Congress as part of the Hardhats for Highways campaign to urge their support. We will make sure even more members of the construction community will make their voices heard as this debate continues."