Infrastructure and Jobs
Investing in our infrastructure has historically been a non-partisan issue. However, in recent years, Congress’ investment in addressing America’s crumbling infrastructure has been pathetically weak. The American Society of Civil Engineers gives our infrastructure a D+ grade and the World Economic Forum ranks America 24th in infrastructure. Transportation for America estimates that there are 63,000 structurally deficient bridges in the United States – 2088 in New York State and 99 in Western New York alone. Brian has consistently called on Congress to make a bold investment in nation building right here at home. In 2012 he introduced the Nation Building Here at Home Act , which would have invested $1.2 trillion over five years to rebuild our infrastructure, with the potential to create 27 million jobs and reduce unemployment to 5.6 percent.
More on Infrastructure and Jobs
Congressmembers Brian Higgins (NY-26) and Jaime Herrera Beutler (R-WA) introduced the Fire Department Proper Response and Equipment Prioritization Act (FD PREP Act) to better equip firefighters to respond to train accidents. The FD PREP Act, H.R. 4987, would direct the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to categorize hazmat operations, training, and equipment acquisition relating to crude oil and ethanol rail traffic as “high priority” within its Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) program.
Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26) spoke on the Floor of the House of Representatives in solidarity with thousands of United Auto Workers who have spent the last five weeks on strike following the expiration of their contract with General Motors in September.
Higgins said in part, “The United Auto Workers made sacrifices to keep GM whole when the automaker faced bankruptcy ten years ago. Now those workers simply want to keep their families whole with good healthcare, fair wages, and job security.”
After discussions early this week related to the future of Western New York’s roads and bridges, Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26) went to Washington, D.C. to fight for action on a substantial federal investment in infrastructure.
In remarks on the Floor, Higgins said, “Our roads are crumbling, our water infrastructure is breaking, and our transit systems are inadequate and outdated. The situation couldn’t me more urgent and the opportunity couldn’t be more obvious.”
Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26) and State Senator Tim Kennedy were joined by community leaders to announce $10.625 million in new funding for renovation to the Ohio Street Lift Bridge. The recent allocation, through the Federal Highway Administration’s National Highway Freight program with matching funds through New York State, is in addition to $5.23 million in previously allocated federal and state transportation funds, providing a total investment of $15.855 million for the Buffalo infrastructure project.
Funding Will Be Used To Purchase Cleaner, Modern And More Environmentally-Friendly Electric Buses And The Necessary Support Infrastructure
Schumer, Gillibrand & Higgins Wrote To Transportation Secretary Chao In May Touting NFTA Request
Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26) announced a federal grant totaling $2,853,778 to the Niagara Falls Water Board for improvements to the Niagara Falls Wastewater Treatment Plant.
The federal funding is provided under the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Hazard Mitigation Grant Program, which provides communities with grants to “eliminate long-term risk to people and property from future disasters.” It is estimated that every dollar spent through this program in prevention saves $4 in future damages within a community.
Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26) announced two federal grants to the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority (NFTA) for improvements at the Niagara Falls International Airport. The grants were awarded by the Federal Aviation Administration, under the US Department of Transportation.
The first grant is in the amount of $135,000 and will go to removing trees that obstruct two of the airport’s runways and approach surfaces.
Congressman Brian Higgins (NY-26) released the following statement in response to the news that the United States and Canada have reached an agreement to lift 232 duties on steel and aluminum within the next two days: