Congress attempts to pass infrastructure bill in nine days.
With summer vacation fast approaching, and dreams of warm beaches and clear water drifting through the minds of our elected representatives, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has decided to spoil the mood with a culminating project for the class of 2015. The assignment: finance the Highway Trust Fund for the next six years. Going so far as to threaten an unusual weekend session, McConnell has made it clear that no one will play until their homework is done.
The situation is critical. The Highway Trust Fund will expire at the end of this month if legislation is not passed. That creates significant challenges to the states, municipalities and construction firms dependent on that source of financing for infrastructure projects around the country.
It’s also bad news for the commuter who spends over $300 a year on car repairs due to bad roads, the businesses that lose over $200 billion a year in productivity due to inefficient roadways, and those who drive over any of the 156,000 structurally deficient bridges across America.
Every $1 billion spent on infrastructure development creates over 21,000 jobs and every dollar invested in transportation infrastructure creates a return of $3.54. – Duke University CGGC
Failure to reach a solution on this issue is unthinkable … among everyone but those in the halls of Congress. States and municipalities have begun to take action on their own, a reflection of their disillusionment with Congressional malaise. Will this Congress reach a solution where so many have failed in the past? Perhaps McConnell should have better evaluated his classmates before committing to such an ambitious timeline.