The following is a statement by K.N. Gunalan “Guna,” Ph.D., P.E., President, American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) in response to the House Transportation and Infrastructure (T&I) Committee’s passage of 2020 surface transportation reauthorization, the Investing in a New Vision for the Environment and Surface Transportation in America (INVEST in America) Act:
“We are encouraged that Congress is shifting the conversation back to infrastructure this week as part of economic relief and recovery. With both the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee passing the INVEST in America Act as well as the introduction of the comprehensive Moving Forward Act by the House Ways and Means Committee, Congress is taking a holistic approach to investing in and modernizing our infrastructure—from our roads and bridges to ports, energy grid, broadband, schools, and water infrastructure.
Our nation’s roads, bridges, public transit, and rail systems were facing a daunting maintenance crisis, represented by an investment gap of $1 trillion, prior to the current pandemic. A chronic lack of investment coupled with the revenue shortfalls that state Departments of Transportation are experiencing as a result of COVID-19 will have dire consequences for our nation’s already deteriorating infrastructure.
America needs reliable, modern, and resilient infrastructure to rebuild our economy and put people back to work.
After hours of debate and over 300 proposed amendments to the legislation, we appreciate commitment from both sides of the aisle to get this done for the American people.
With the expiration of the current surface transportation authorization bill, the FAST Act, quickly approaching on September 30th, we urge both the House and Senate to continue the tradition of bipartisan reauthorizations of our nation’s surface transportation systems.
As a next step, we ask the Senate Banking, Commerce, and Finance Committees to do their part to keep the process moving.”