Calls for a $7.5 Billion Investment in Transportation Infrastructure

WASHINGTON, D.C., (May 21, 2015) – Today, Congresswoman Maxine Waters (CA-43), Ranking Member of the Financial Services Committee, introduced the TIGER Grants for Job Creation Act (H.R. 2495).  This bill will provide an emergency supplemental appropriation of $7.5 billion over the next 6 years for the Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) program, which creates jobs by funding investments in transportation infrastructure.

The funding will be exempt from sequestration and will not reduce funds available for other federal programs. Joining Congresswoman Waters as original cosponsors are more than 65 Members of Congress under the leadership of Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-9).

“Our economy is struggling to recover from the recession, and our roads, bridges, and public transit systems are in desperate need of repair,” said Congresswoman Waters. “The TIGER Grants for Job Creation Act will create jobs, encourage innovation, and modernize our transportation infrastructure for the 21st century.”

“I am proud that Memphis received a TIGER Grant for the Main2Main project and have seen firsthand the positive impact this program can have on our local economy,” said Congressman Cohen. “Improving our decaying infrastructure will help boost the American economy, create jobs, and ensure we can remain competitive in the 21st century economy. I look forward to working with Congresswoman Waters to pass the TIGER Grants for Job Creation Act.”

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the unemployment rate is 5.4 percent nationwide.  Furthermore, the rate is 6.9 percent among Hispanics, 9.6 percent among African Americans, and 17.1 percent among teenagers.  Meanwhile, the American Society of Civil Engineers gave the public infrastructure of the United States a grade of “D+” in 2013 and estimated that we will need to invest $3.6 trillion by 2020 in order to improve the condition of our infrastructure.

“I call upon my colleagues to pass the TIGER Grants for Job Creation Act, invest in our crumbling infrastructure, and create meaningful employment in communities across the United States,” said Congresswoman Waters.

Earlier this year, the President proposed an expansion of the TIGER program, which would provide $7.5 billion for TIGER over the next 6 years, including $1.25 billion in fiscal year 2016.  Congresswoman Waters sent a letter to the Appropriations Committee urging full funding of the President’s $1.25 billion request for TIGER in FY 2016, and a total of 146 Members of Congress signed her letter.