The Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) is urging support for the highway bill scheduled for consideration by the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee on Feb. 2, 2012.
AEM says it believes the long-awaited legislation would point the way to job creation, desperately needed infrastructure improvements, and greater national and international competitiveness for all domestic businesses.
“Our manufacturers believe H.R. 7 is one of the most important pieces of legislation before Congress this session for job growth and for our economic well-being,” Dennis Slater, AEM president, said in a written statement. “AEM urges the House to quickly consider and approve H.R. 7 and to move quickly to conference with the Senate prior to the March 31 deadline of the current stop-gap funding.”
Slater notes that roads, highways and bridges require long-term project planning. “The American Energy & Infrastructure Jobs Act (H.R. 7) provides the construction industry with the market certainty it needs to make capital investments in employees and in equipment with new technologies for improved air quality and operating efficiencies,” Slater added. “And in a still tenuous economy, it provides a much-needed growth engine.”
The bill maintains federal funding for infrastructure in one of the most difficult budget environments in recent years. The bill reforms and consolidates existing highway programs, accelerates project approval times, and eliminates earmarks.