Long-Term Measure’s Modest Increases to User Fees Will Provide a Fiscally Responsible Approach to Funding Upgrades to Aging and Over-Burdened Roads, Waterways and Public Buildings

The chief executive officer of the Associated General Contractors of America, Stephen E. Sandherr, released the following statement in reaction to the release of discussion draft infrastructure proposal by the chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee:

“Chairman Shuster has demonstrated wisdom and courage by outlining a series of infrastructure recommendations that will support meaningful improvements to the nation’s surface transportation systems for the next decade. In what is becoming all-too-rare, the chairman has made a serious, substantive effort to identify fiscally responsible ways to pay for improvements to aging and over-burdened transportation, waterways and public buildings across the country.

“While we have concerns that his call to replace the current funding system with a new approach in ten years could be politically difficult, he is right to assume that we need a user-fee approach that is better suited the way people use our infrastructure.

“His concept will lead to marked improvements in the quality, efficiency and safety of the nation’s surface transportation systems and other public infrastructure. It will make American employers more competitive and successful by reducing the costs of coping with the chronic congestion, detours and delays that effectively serve as a tax on business. And it will help prepare our transportation system to accommodate the kind of technological improvements – including self-driving vehicles – that are likely to radically transform personal and commercial transportation for the years to come.

“The Associated General Contractors of America and our more than 27,000 member firms are prepared to work closely with the Chairman, Congressional leadership of both parties and the administration to make sure this draft serves as the catalyst for enacting new, long-term legislation. Enacting a measure like this will go a long way to help rebuild America’s infrastructure.”