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Larson, Connecticut Delegation Calls for Long-Term, 6 year Transportation Infrastructure Funding

July 11, 2014
Press Release
Says Leadership Should Cancel August Break, Stay in Congress to Get the Job Done

Washington - Today, Rep. John B. Larson (CT-01) and the entire Connecticut Congressional Delegation continued their efforts to bring a long-term transportation bill to a vote, joining the Connecticut Construction Industry in calling for a long-term solution in 2014:

“House Leadership should cancel the August recess so that Members can stay in Washington, do their jobs, and come together to fix our crumbling infrastructure and put the nation back to work. With the uncertainty of funding shortages already casting a shadow over needed transportation projects in Connecticut and across the country, we cannot afford to lose another opportunity to truly strengthen the Highway Trust Fund,” said Congressman John B. Larson, Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro, Congressman Joe Courtney, Congressman Jim Himes and Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty in a joint statement.

“A long-term measure not only addresses our infrastructure needs, but will help drive down unemployment. Further, we know that the best way to reduce the deficit is to lower unemployment and get people back to work,” the Delegation continued. “Failure to act on the Highway Trust Fund could cost Connecticut as many as 31,000 construction and transportation related jobs. There is no reason why any Member of Congress should not join in this united goal to address our infrastructure needs, put people back to work and lower our nation’s deficit. While we should ensure our projects are funded today, we must continue to work on passing a long-term transportation bill.”

Earlier, House Ways & Means Committee Democrats offered an amendment (attached here) calling on the House to pass a 6 year, long-term infrastructure package before the end of the year. The Committee proposal was rejected on party lines, with 16 Democrats including Congressman John B. Larson voting in favor and 23 Republicans opposed. The Connecticut Delegation is prepared to stay in session through the August recess and into the lame duck session to ensure a 6 year fix to the Highway Trust Fund Program.

“The construction industry and our partners applaud the Connecticut House Delegation for working to shore up the Highway Trust Fund for the short term, but more importantly, our state delegation is right on point calling on Congress to develop a sustainable funding source to support a long term transportation program.” said Donald J. Shubert, President of the Connecticut Construction Industries Association and Lori Pelletier of the Connecticut AFL-CIO in a joint statement. “Thousands of construction jobs, safe and convenient travel for the public, and our competitive business climate are at stake if we fail to turn this short-term fix into a long term program without delay. The Connecticut Delegation is right – congress needs to stay over the recess and continue through the lame duck session until the job is done.”

Without Congressional action, the Federal Highway Trust Fund is projected to become insolvent by the end of August, jeopardizing transportation projects in Connecticut and across the country.