Greater Louisville Inc. The Metro Chamber of Commerce 2019 Chamber of the Year
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Media Center

May 17, 2019 11:35am

No time like the present: Let’s begin rebuilding America’s infrastructure

It’s National Infrastructure Week! And it could not come at a better time. Last month, the White House and Democratic leadership in the House of Representatives announced that they had reached a deal for a $2 trillion infrastructure package that could finally start the process rebuilding infrastructure in regions like Greater Louisville. The next step in the process is settling on a way to finance the proposal.

To help build on this momentum and call attention to National Infrastructure Week, GLI has been engaging in a social media campaign and crafted letters to every member of the Greater Louisville congressional delegation, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Senators Rand Paul, Todd Young, and Mike Braun and Representatives John Yarmuth, Brett Guthrie, Thomas Massie, and Trey Hollingsworth.

Read our full letter.

If there has ever been a time in recent history for Washington to move forward on passing a comprehensive infrastructure package, it is now. With an agreement in place between President Trump and Speaker Pelosi on a $2 trillion plan to begin rebuilding America’s crumbling infrastructure, we are strongly urging members of Greater Louisville’s congressional delegation to work together to make this plan a reality.

High-quality infrastructure is vitally important to the economic future of Greater Louisville. As one of the world’s leading logistics hubs, millions of dollars’ worth of goods ship in and out Greater Louisville everyday by land, sea, and air. As a bi-state region, workers, consumers, and commercial vehicles crisscross the Ohio River on bridges linking Kentucky and Indiana together.

Infrastructure in our region is not keeping up with demand. In Jefferson County, for example, the condition of close to 50 percent of our roads are rated as poor or moderate. The American Society of Civil Engineers has calculated that more than 80,000 miles of public roads in Kentucky and more than 96,000 miles in Indiana are in poor condition. As our population and economy continue to grow, the strains placed on our regional infrastructure will only become greater.

Congress must act now to begin the process of finally modernizing America’s infrastructure for the 21st century. We need roads, bridges, and public transit systems that can keep up with our region’s ambitions, empower our workforce, and support economic growth.

We fully appreciate that financing the proposed $2 trillion plan will be a major sticking point. It is therefore important for you to know that business and community leaders in Greater Louisville strongly support an increase to the federal fuels user fee as a way to fund infrastructure projects. This is a well-designed and equitable tax that has not been adjusted since 1994. It is time to raise it so that we can start investing and rebuilding America’s infrastructure.

As talks continue in the coming days, we encourage you to do all that you can to keep this momentum moving and send a meaningful infrastructure bill to The White House.