Tom Carper, U.S. Senator for Delaware

WASHINGTON – Today, Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.), Chairman of the Subcommittee on Transportation and Infrastructure, Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), Chairman of the Committee on Environment and Public Works, Sen. David Vitter (R-Louis.), Ranking Member of the Committee on Environment and Public Works, and Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Transportation and Infrastructure, held a press conference regarding the reauthorization of the transportation bill, entitled “Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21).”

A copy of Sen. Carper's statement, as prepared for delivery, follows:

“Good morning. I am proud to stand here today with my colleagues to update you on our encouraging progress toward passing a new transportation bill.

“Every state, city, and town in the country has a stake in this bill, which provides for more than a forty percent of all highway capital investments and a quarter of public transit funding in America. We haven’t been able to give our governors, mayors, and other officials the certainty of long term funding since SAFETEA-LU expired in 2009.

“In the mean time, state and local officials, both Republican and Democrat, have been stepping up to the plate and finding ways to raise revenue to pay for transportation investments. But these officials are doing so based on the long-standing promise that the Federal government will continue to be a partner in infrastructure investments.

“The bipartisan principles we’ve agreed to will provide the foundation we need to do our part to deliver on that promise. It will build on the comprehensive reforms of MAP-21, which promised higher performance and more accountability.

“I am pleased that we’ve agreed to revisit the emphasis on improving the efficiency, reliability, and affordability of freight transportation across the country. From major corporations to small businesses with one employee, the private sector depends on robust public infrastructure to compete and grow.

 

“Whether it is poultry in Delaware, produce from California, beef from Wyoming, or energy in Louisiana, our state’s industries depend on smart investments in transportation for efficient supply chains to get their goods to market.

“So regardless if we make those investments in California or Louisiana, we all get the benefits. Because ultimately, it’s not just Delaware or Louisiana that is competing with Europe, China, and the rest of the world -- it’s the United States.

“Senator Boxer, Senator Vitter, thank you for your leadership.

“I know we all look forward to getting this bill done quickly and in the spirit of cooperation that has defined our progress to this point.”