video: NEW: Sen. Whitehouse Pushes for Infrastructure Jobs
Wednesday, November 02, 2011
Today U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse joined President Barack Obama at a press conference to urge support for legislation that will put Americans back to work and help rebuild our aging transportation infrastructure. Senator Whitehouse is an original cosponsor of the Rebuild America Jobs Act, which would provide immediate investments to improve roads and bridges, and would help establish a new "infrastructure bank" to fund future projects.
During his remarks today, President Obama commended Senator Whitehouse for supporting infrastructure jobs, saying Whitehouse "gets it."
“I have heard from countless Rhode Islanders about how sensible it would be to put people to work repairing our crumbling transportation infrastructure,” said Whitehouse. “I was pleased to join the President today to push for this important legislation to create jobs right away, revive our economy, and improve our roads and bridges.”
The Rebuild America Jobs Act includes $50 billion in immediate investments for highways, transit, rail and aviation, and will help modernize our aging infrastructure — which now receives a grade of “D” from the American Society of Civil Engineers — and put hundreds of thousands of construction workers back on the job. It is the second piece of the President's American Jobs Act to be considered by the Senate.
In Rhode Island, nearly sixty-eight percent of the roads are rated in poor or mediocre condition, and 1 in 5 bridges are structurally deficient – the fourth highest of any state. The Rebuild America Jobs Act will give Rhode Island immediate investments of at least $162,400,000 that could support a minimum of approximately 2,100 jobs.
The legislation also includes the establishment of a National Infrastructure Bank to support a viable source of transportation financing. The Bank would be allocated an initial $10 billion and could leverage hundreds of billions of dollars to fuel innovation and fund needed projects.