By Mason Colbert
The U.S. needs jobs! The Republican leadership will now be responsible in the lower house of Congress to generate jobs and continue the economic recovery for the U.S. in 2011 and 2012. Rebuilding America’s failing infrastructure offers an unparalleled opportunity to create millions of jobs (roughly 3.5 million) in a relatively short period of time and accelerate demand, which in turn, accelerates job growth. Rebuilding the infrastructure would be the single most effective approach to return the U.S. economy to a stabilized growth for jobs and financial prosperity. I respectfully request the Republican leadership to focus total attention to job creation in 2011 and 2012 by rebuilding the U.S. infrastructure and continue economic growth for the prosperity and future of America. Read further for more detail.
A healthy and modern infrastructure is essential for the future economic success of the United States. The government at all levels has consistently under-funded infrastructure projects for decades now. The tragic collapse of the I-35 bridge in Minneapolis was a wake-up call to pay attention to our decaying infrastructure. This bridge is the third wake up call for the United States to reevaluate how we treat critical infrastructure. The first was 9/11, which showed us that infrastructure is vulnerable to terrorism. Hurricane Katrina was a second wake up call, which showed us that infrastructure is vulnerable to natural disasters. This time, we know that infrastructure is vulnerable to use, age, and neglect. It would take more than two trillion dollars to upgrade roads, bridges, mass transit, airports, schools, dams, water purity, and waste disposal facilities all across the United States.
President Obama rolled out a long-term jobs program to upgrade and modernize our national infrastructure on Monday, September 6th, 2010 (Congress failed to act the first time and President Obama has again proposed this on August 3rd, 2011) that will consist of a initial spending bill of roughly $50 billion to rebuild roads, railways and airport runways throughout the United States. The overall proposal will consist of $650 billion in spending over the next 6 years and will represent the largest and most comprehensive infrastructure plan since the 1930’s.
The goals of the infrastructure plan include: rebuilding 150,000 miles of roads; constructing and maintaining 4,000 miles of railways, shorter, high speed rail projects; and rehabilitating or reconstructing 150 miles of airport runways, while also installing a next generation air navigation system designed to reduce travel times and delays and will call for the creation of a permanent infrastructure bank that would focus on funding national and regional infrastructure projects. The plan will save or create roughly 3.5 million jobs. The new light-rail plan will move people and goods efficiently across vast spaces, 200 mph trains sound pretty good. They’re fast and more efficient than their equivalents on wheels or wings. This plan will also help with environmental pollution and save millions of barrels of oil annually.
The strengthening of our infrastructure will be paid for by a White House proposal which involves closing a number of special tax breaks for oil and gas companies to pay for this proposal. The additional revenue could also be expended for development of clean energy technologies to phase out the current oil and coal industries which are inefficient, environmentally harmful and dangerous to the people engaged in extracting them.
President Obama’s strategy is to update a failing U.S. infrastructure and strengthen America’s competitiveness in the 21st century, boost the economy and create desperately needed jobs. Republican leadership immediately stood against this measure while also saying no to cutting more taxes for small business owners.
The Republican leadership is now saying ‘no’ to meaningful ideas that will add jobs and strengthen this country’s future during the most severe recession since the Great Depression, all the while, simultaneously passing the Bush unfunded tax-cuts of 2001 and 2003 for an additional two years for the most wealthy Americans that will cost, including the related interest costs, $80 billion, that will be added to the national debt over the next two-year period.
The decaying infrastructure has become a serious national security threat and a hindrance to U.S. Competitiveness throughout the world. The American Society of Civil Engineers have estimated a total bill to meet needs would cost in excess of $2.2 trillion over a five year period. When funded, this initial 50 billion will be a good start; however, continued government expenditures for repair and upgrading of our national infrastructure will be both ongoing and essential for the future growth and prosperity of the United States.
I understand the importance of President Obama’s new infrastructure plan and by signing this petition; I acknowledge my total support for this project to strengthen all aspects of my nation’s infrastructure, now, and in the future. I fully back this desperately needed plan for my countries future competitiveness throughout the world, to strengthen national security and to ensure our nation’s future prosperity.
To demand congress to create jobs go to change.org and sign the petition
Demand Congress to Create Jobs by Rebuilding the U.S. Infrastructure