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Problem Solvers Caucus Releases Report with Bipartisan Policy Recommendations to Rebuild America’s Infrastructure

Bipartisan Lawmakers Urge Congress to Enact Commonsense Legislation

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Washington, January 10, 2018 | comments

WASHINGTON – Today, the Problem Solvers Caucus released a new report with bipartisan policy recommendations to build a 21st century infrastructure network for America. The forty-eight member bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus, led by Co-Chairs Tom Reed (NY-23) and Josh Gottheimer (NJ-05), launched an Infrastructure Working Group to find consensus on a bipartisan set of policies to serve as the bedrock for a plan that addresses the dire need to rebuild and responsibly invest in infrastructure across the United States.

The Infrastructure Working Group, co-chaired by Reps. John Katko (NY-24) and Elizabeth Esty (CT-05), met with over one hundred outside stakeholder organizations, the Administration, and leaders in Congress, to develop bipartisan concepts to move an infrastructure plan forward. These bipartisan policy options will be the foundation for a comprehensive plan to improve the nation’s highways, roads and bridges, transit and railways, ports and airports, water and sewer systems, energy systems and the power grid, and broadband and communications networks.

“It’s always better for the country when we act together. The bipartisan policy solutions we’ve delivered provide Congress the building blocks necessary to craft a comprehensive infrastructure plan that both parties can agree to,” said Problem Solvers Caucus Co-Chair Tom Reed. “We’ve paved a bipartisan path to get to ‘yes’ and look forward to working with key leaders in Congress to find the right mix of policies to create legislation that can, and should, be enacted into law as soon as possible.”

“Today, one-third of the bridges and tunnels in New Jersey are considered unsafe, and we have the eighth worst roads in the country. Too many of our pipes are filled with lead; many of our residents have no access to broadband, at all,” said Problem Solvers Caucus Co-Chair Josh Gottheimer. “Commutes are a disaster, and it’s ruining family time and crippling our economy. We can’t keep kicking this problem down the road. Today's report details options for solving these problems, and it’s a good bipartisan starting point. It’s time to get a better ROI in New Jersey for our existing tax dollars. Under no circumstance can we increase gas taxes or tolls – or any taxes for that matter.”

“In Central New York and across the country, our infrastructure is crumbling. Bridges, roads, and ports have fallen into disrepair and states and local municipalities are not able to plan for the long-term. I was proud to work in a bipartisan manner with Rep. Esty and members of the Problem Solvers Infrastructure Working Group to produce a comprehensive report detailing areas in which we can begin to work together to streamline processes and provide sustainable funding solutions. In doing so, we’ve signaled to President Trump, as well as leaders on both sides of the aisle in the House and Senate, that we are ready to work in a bipartisan manner move our nation’s infrastructure forward.” – Rep. John Katko (NY-24)

“Our country became great because Americans dreamed big, built big, and made bold decisions. Working together, we spanned rivers, electrified rural America, built railroads across the continent, connected cities thousands of miles apart with highways, and moved information faster than humans ever imagined possible. Those investments created millions of jobs, led to unprecedented mobility and innovation, and established America as the envy of the world. Today, millions of Americans see aging airports and rightly wonder if we’re still capable of tackling the toughest challenges our country faces in a bold, bipartisan manner. That’s why I’m proud to lead this effort with Congressman Katko and the members of the Problem Solvers Caucus to fix our country’s broken infrastructure and put people back to work. You cannot build a 21st century economy with a mid-20th century infrastructure. It’s time for infrastructure.” – Rep. Elizabeth Esty (CT-05)

“The release of this comprehensive report proves there is real bipartisan support for improving our nation’s aging infrastructure. It’s a first step towards reforming our regulatory environment, modernizing transportation infrastructure, and expanding the internet’s reach into rural communities. I am thankful for the leadership of my colleagues throughout this process, and I look forward to continuing our bipartisan work to find solutions for the American people.” – Rep. Lloyd Smucker (PA-16)

“I’m proud to stand with my colleagues from the Problem Solvers Caucus to propose a bipartisan plan to fix our long-ignored infrastructure needs. Together, we can build a stronger 21st century economy - one that works for every single American by incentivizing innovation and investment through public-private partnerships, making smarter investment decisions, and increasing our accountability to taxpayers. I look forward to seeing what we can do together to move this proposal forward for hardworking families in Nevada and all across the country.” – Rep. Jacky Rosen (NV-03)

“America’s infrastructure is in desperate need for fresh investment. Our roads and bridges are crumbling, while rural communities remain underserved by broadband services. This plan is a common-sense approach to one of our nation’s most immediate problems. I look forward to leveraging the ideas here in 2018 as Congress and the administration work together to rebuild America.” – Rep. John Faso (NY-19)

“America has a 21st century economy supported by a 20th century infrastructure. Potholes don’t fix themselves. Our roads and bridges are crumbling. Whole swaths of the country lack access to basic broadband. America needs a long-term infrastructure bill with a sustainable funding source.” – Rep. Peter Welch (VT-At-Large)

“This is what Americans are crying out for, bipartisan cooperation that gets things done which improve their everyday lives. Infrastructure investment is about jobs.  Not just jobs for people who do the building and rebuilding, but jobs created when American businesses are made more efficient through better infrastructure.  It's also about a better quality of life for all Americans with less congestion, less pollution, cleaner water, and other improvements.” – Rep. Dan Lipinski (IL-03)

“The infrastructure in this country is outdated, and it’s an issue all Americans want to see fixed. I’m proud to be part of a bipartisan approach that includes the rebuilding and investing of our roads, bridges, and ports – but also ensures we have a modern energy grid, broadband networks, and clean, sustainable water systems nationwide. Our Problem Solvers Caucus plan focuses on creating public-private partnerships and reducing unnecessary regulations, while investing government resources efficiently and effectively. Modernizing our infrastructure is a necessity, and our solution is in the best interest of the American people and our economy.” – Rep. Adam Kinzinger (IL-16)

“We desperately need to invest in our aging infrastructure. San Diego has plans to improve our roads, bridges, transit systems, water infrastructure, and power grids that will transform our region. Securing long-term funding helps invest in San Diego’s future through major infrastructure projects like Mid-Coast and Pure Water San Diego. Now is the time for Congress to work with the administration and make infrastructure a national priority.” – Rep. Scott Peters (CA-52)

“A safe, reliable, and modern infrastructure network is critical to a strong and vibrant economy. Each day, Pennsylvanians travel on roads and utilize public transit for daily commutes and recreation. First responders and law enforcement officials rely on it to keep our communities safe. The time is now to push ahead with big and bold innovative modernizations to our infrastructure. As the Problem Solvers Caucus, we have laid out a plan that has bipartisan consensus and is intended to be a roadmap for legislative action.” – Rep. Ryan Costello (PA-06)

“Infrastructure is not a Democratic or Republican issue. There is bipartisan consensus that we need big, bold investments in our crumbling infrastructure – not only in roads and bridges, but in broadband and aging water systems that will protect the health of children and families and keep this nation competitive. This report provides a roadmap of options for rebuilding America’s infrastructure and bringing it into the 21st Century.” – Rep. Debbie Dingell (MI-12)

“Being from Michigan, we understand better than most the need for critical upgrades to our roads, bridges, and highways. Additionally, as the Chairman of the Energy Subcommittee, I'm pleased to see a focus on improving our energy infrastructure as well. Infrastructure has traditionally been a bipartisan issue and I look forward to working with my colleagues in the Problem Solvers Caucus to ensure that continues for the betterment of all Americans.” – Rep. Fred Upton (MI-06)

“We desperately need to invest in roads, bridges, and general infrastructure, and the only way we are going to get that done is through bipartisan collaboration.  In too many communities we are suffering the consequences of underfunding infrastructure for far too long.  It can be seen in traffic jams on the way to work - or in our public school buildings, some of which are too small and falling apart - and the lack of broadband in rural areas.  It’s vital to the economy to step up the federal government’s investment in a broad range of infrastructure projects, and I’m determined to get it done.” – Rep. Jared Polis (CO-02)

“Our region is at the heart of our country’s most important economic corridor, and to take advantage of that we need safe, modern infrastructure. It’s critical we work in a bipartisan way to find creative solutions for a challenge so important to jobs and economic prosperity for Pennsylvania families.” – Rep. Patrick Meehan (PA-07)

“Investing in our nation’s infrastructure is good for the economy, good for jobs and good for our country. For far too long our crumbling infrastructure has been neglected and I’m looking forward to, in a bipartisan manner, work together to fix it.” – Rep. Mike Coffman (CO-06)

“The need for dedicated, long-term funding for transportation and infrastructure projects is vital to alleviating the congestion problems that plague South Florida, and communities across the country. This report lays the ground work for a sensible, bipartisan compromise that would bring our nation’s roads, waterways, ports, airports, and energy infrastructure into the 21st Century. Action on this issue is long-overdue, and I urge leaders of both parties to have the political will to do this the right way – together.” – Rep. Carlos Curbelo (FL-26)

“Both parties agree that investing in infrastructure is key to creating family wage jobs, protecting public safety, and spurring economic growth. This bipartisan plan will lead to smart investments that will help us modernize our nation’s infrastructure for the 21st Century.” – Rep. Derek Kilmer (WA-06)

The Problem Solvers Caucus is a bipartisan group in Congress comprising of 48 members – equally divided between Democrats and Republicans – who are committed to forging bipartisan cooperation on key issues. It is co-chaired by Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ) and Rep. Tom Reed (R-NY).

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