Congresswoman Waters offers Amendment to Create Jobs though Investment in Transportation Infrastructure
WASHINGTON – Congresswoman Maxine Waters (CA-43), Ranking Member of the Financial Services Committee, submitted an amendment to the House Rules Committee, which would expand the popular TIGER transportation program, and urged the Rules Committee to allow her to offer her amendment on the House floor during consideration of the transportation bill. The Congresswoman’s amendment would provide $7.5 billion for TIGER over 6 years, consistent with the President’s proposal to expand TIGER. The funding would be exempt from sequestration.
“My amendment will provide an emergency supplemental appropriation totaling $7.5 billion dollars over the next six years for the successful TIGER program, which creates jobs through investments in transportation infrastructure,” explained Congresswoman Waters in her statement before the Rules Committee.
Congresswoman Waters’ amendment is based on the TIGER Grants for Job Creation Act (H.R. 2495), a bill which she introduced earlier this year, and which has 69 cosponsors.
“The economy is still struggling to recover from the recession,” said Congresswoman Waters. “The unemployment rate is still above 5 percent nationwide and is significantly higher in some minority and disadvantaged communities. Meanwhile, the American Society of Civil Engineers gave the public infrastructure of the United States a grade of “D+” in 2013 and estimated that we will need to invest $3.6 trillion by 2020 in order to improve the condition of our infrastructure.”
TIGER – formally known as Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery – is a nationwide competitive grant program that creates jobs by funding investments in transportation infrastructure by states, local governments, and transit agencies. The President proposed an expansion of the TIGER program, which would provide $7.5 billion for TIGER over the next 6 years.
“Passage of an emergency supplemental appropriation would provide funding for TIGER free from sequestration and without reducing funding for other important domestic priorities, and it would allow states, local governments, and transit agencies to begin immediately to plan projects and prepare grant applications,” concluded the Congresswoman. “Thus, it would ensure an efficient use of funds and timely job creation.”
The transportation bill already includes an amendment authored by Congresswoman Waters to ensure equity for economically distressed urban communities in the distribution of federal highway funds. This amendment was offered by Congressman André Carson (IN-07) during the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee’s consideration of the transportation bill. The Carson-Waters amendment was passed by voice vote, and the bill was subsequently reported out of committee and scheduled for consideration on the House floor.