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Congresswoman Suzan DelBene

Representing the 1st District of Washington

Transportation

Across the nation, our infrastructure is facing a breaking point. An efficient and functioning infrastructure system is critical to the economy of the Washington's First District. Unfortunately, many of our roads and bridges are in a state of disrepair. Our state has more than 7,000 bridges, many of which were built during the 1950s and 1960s. We need to invest in safety improvements for our bridges and in renovations along I-5 and Highway 2. Moving forward on transportation improvements that efficiently move people and goods will improve connections to our ports, support trade, help connect people to their jobs and spur economic growth.

The collapse of the I-5 Skagit River Bridge on May 23, 2013, after being hit by an oversized truck, should serve as a wakeup call to Congress. This bridge is a 58 year-old structure that carries 71,000 vehicles a day – that’s 25 million vehicles a year. There are countless bridges across the state – and across the country – that are older and in a worse shape than the Skagit River Bridge. I was able to help secure $16.6 million in emergency funding to immediately rebuild the bridge and ensure that the Skagit Valley stayed open for business.

However, we need to prioritize spending to fix our crumbling infrastructure now, for safety and before it becomes even more expensive to maintain in the future. Infrastructure projects will also put people back to work. Congress took an important step in passing the FAST Act, which reauthorizes federal surface transportation programs for five years and invests $305 billion in transportation projects, including a total of $3.5 billion in highway funding and $1.2 billion in transit funding for Washington state. This is the first long-term transportation investment passed since 2005 that would fund projects for more than two years, and was long overdue.

The FAST Act included an amendment I authored that ensures the Frontline Workforce Development Program is effectively evaluated and policy recommendations are generated to improve the program. Often referred to as the Ladders of Opportunity Initiative, the program provides grants to train and recruit underrepresented populations for a career path in transit maintenance and operations.

While the FAST act was a critical and needed step, much more work is needed to meet our region’s infrastructure needs. I will continue to work to ensure that an efficient and usable highway system is a priority for the federal government, and work for increased funding to maintain and improve our bridges, highways and public transit systems. I am also committed to helping to improve passenger rail service, public transit, and our crumbling roads and bridges. Moving forward, I will fight for long-term transportation solutions that allow us to get the best return on our investments.

More on Transportation

May 18, 2017 eNewsletters
Dear Friend,This week is National Infrastructure Week. Across the nation, our infrastructure is facing a breaking point. An efficient and functioning infrastructure system is critical to the economy of the Washington's First District.
Mar 23, 2017 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Sens. Patty Murray (D-WA) and Maria Cantwell (D-WA), and Reps. Rick Larsen (WA-02), Jaime Herrera Beutler (WA-03), Suzan DelBene (WA-01), and Derek Kilmer (WA-06) sent a letter to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Office of Management and Budget to request funding to fulfill critical dredging and maintenance needs at six small ports and harbors in Washington state.
Jul 7, 2016 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senators Patty Murray (D-WA) and Maria Cantwell (D-WA), and Representatives Jim McDermott (WA-07), Adam Smith (WA-09), Rick Larsen (WA-02), Suzan DelBene (WA-01), Denny Heck (WA-10), and Derek Kilmer (WA-06) applauded the U.S.
Jun 10, 2016 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – This week, members of the Washington Delegation, Reps. Dave Reichert, Jim McDermott, Rick Larsen, Derek Kilmer, Denny Heck, Suzan DelBene and Adam Smith introduced H.R. 5417, the bipartisan Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund Reform Act, which would ensure the annual funds collected through the Harbor Maintenance Tax (HMT) are used to support our ports and strengthen our region’s global competitiveness. Members of the Washington Delegation released the following statement after introducing the bill.
May 19, 2016 eNewsletters
Dear Friend,An efficient and functioning infrastructure system is critical to our economy. During this National Infrastructure Week, we should be looking at opportunities for much-needed repairs, maintenance and improvements of our roads, bridges and highways.
Feb 4, 2016 eNewsletters
Recently, I had the opportunity to stop along US 2 near Stevens Pass, where heavy rains caused hillsides to erode and downed trees damaged bridge guardrails.
Dec 3, 2015 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Suzan DelBene (WA-01) today voted for a bipartisan bill to invest $305 billion in transportation projects for the next five years.
Nov 24, 2015 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell, and Reps. Suzan DelBene, Dave Reichert, Jaime Herrera Beutler, Denny Heck, and Rick Larsen sent a letter to Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx, urging the Department of Transportation to quickly approve emergency relief funding to repair heavy damage to roadways throughout Washington state from storms that took place November 13th through November 18th.

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