DearColleague.us

Letter

 

From: The Honorable Norma J. Torres
Sent By:
justin.vogt@mail.house.gov

Date: 3/31/2017

Current Signers: DeSaulnier, Blumenauer, H. Johnson

LAST CALL: Deadline Friday, March 31st at COB

Dear Colleague:

Earlier this month, the American Society of Civil Engineers finalized
grading America’s infrastructure
as a D+, the same grade we received in 2013.  Things are not getting better, and Congress has repeatedly failed to act to provide our state and local governments adequate funding to support transportation improvements.
It’s time we empower our local leaders to act where Congress can not by supporting innovative financing strategies through regional partnerships.

Through my work, the 2015 Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act (FAST Act) included Section 1441, the Regional Infrastructure Accelerator (RIA) Demonstration program.  This section aims to assist local governments in developing improved infrastructure
priorities and financing strategies for the accelerated development of projects which are already eligible for funding under the TIFIA program. There have been TIFIA successes
throughout the country, such as the SR-91 Corridor Improvement which supports 280,000 vehicles per day in California’s Inland Empire, to State Highway 288 which links downtown Houston, TX
with Harris and Brazoria Counties, to the Purple Line Project which will connect tens of thousands of Marylanders with low cost public transit. This program has been proven to work, and will foster private investment into public infrastructure improvements
– a model which is a win – win for all parties involved.

This year, I urge you to join me in requesting the Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development, and Related Agencies to meet the authorized levels of the FAST Act by providing $12 million for the RIA Demonstration program in the FY2018 bill.

The deadline to sign the letter is Friday, March 31st.

Please contact Justin Vogt (Justin.vogt@mail.house.gov, 5-6161) in the office of Congresswoman Torres with any questions or to sign onto this letter.

Sincerely,

/s

Norma J. Torres

Member of Congress

 

———————————————————————————–

April X, 2017

 

The Honorable Mario Diaz-Balart                              The Honorable David Price

Chairman                                                                     Ranking Member

Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing                Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing

and Urban Development,                                            and Urban Development,

and Related Agencies                                                 and Related Agencies

Committee on Appropriations                                                Committee on Appropriations

2358-A Rayburn House Office Building                   1016 Longworth House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515                                              Washington, DC 20515

 

 

Dear Chairman Diaz-Balart and Ranking Member Price,

 

As you consider requests related to the Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies Appropriations bill, we respectfully request the Subcommittee fund the Regional Infrastructure Accelerator Demonstration Program
at $12 million.

 

Authorized by Section 1441 of the 2015 Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act (FAST Act), the Regional Infrastructure Accelerator (RIA) Demonstration program aims to assist local governments in developing improved infrastructure priorities and financing
strategies for the accelerated development of projects which are already eligible for funding under the TIFIA program. This program’s funding is administered by the Secretary of Transportation through General Funds to establish regional entities, which would
serve defined geographical areas, and promote innovative financing, build capacity in communities to raise capital, provide technical assistance, identify projects, and reduce costs for public sponsors.

 

There have been TIFIA successes throughout the country, such as the SR-91 Corridor Improvement which supports 280,000 vehicles per day in California’s Inland Empire, to State Highway 288 which links downtown Houston, TX with Harris and Brazoria Counties,
to the Purple Line Project which will connect tens of thousands of Marylanders with low cost public transit. This program has been proven to work, and will foster private investment into public infrastructure improvements – a model which is a win – win for
all parties involved.

 

Earlier this month, the American Society of Civil Engineers finalized grading America’s infrastructure as a D+, the same grade we received in 2013.  Things are not getting better, and Congress has repeatedly failed to act to provide our state and local governments
adequate funding to support transportation improvements.  Programs such as the RIA Demonstration program build on proven successes to approach our infrastructure shortfall in new ways.

 

We appreciate your attention to this request and we will continue to work with your committee on ways to improve infrastructure across the nation.

 

Sincerely,