Monday, February 6, 2012
THREE KEY PROPOSALS FROM LOCAL CONSTITUENTS INCLUDED IN HOUSE TRANSPORTATION BILL; Congressman Reed Turns Local Ideas into Action in Washington
Congressman Tom Reed announced today that three key proposals from 29th Congressional District constituents have been included in the American Energy & Infrastructure Jobs Act, the House transportation bill.
The local proposals include greater flexibility for drivers transporting agricultural commodities, reducing the duplication in the environmental review process for replacement or rehabilitation of existing bridges and highways and creating a national drug and alcohol test results clearinghouse for commercial truck drivers. Each originated from meetings in the district, including a listening session held by Reed and Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure Chairman John Mica at the Greater Rochester International Airport last spring.
“We have heard these local voices and are getting action in Washington,” Reed said. “These are common-sense solutions given by people working on the front lines in Upstate New York agriculture, construction and shipping. Local solutions are always better than the one-size fits all approach we see far too often from Washington. These reforms will protect and create jobs as well as speed replacement of existing bridges and roadways.”
Those involved in suggesting the solutions included Branchport farmer Jim Bedient, Ontario County Public Works Commissioner Bill Wright, and Leonard’s Express owner Ken Johnson. The results were two bills introduced by Reed, the Grape Region Accelerated Production and Efficiency (GRAPE) Act and the Beneficial Upgrades for Investment and Local Development of Bridges (BUILD Bridges) Act. Reed also requested the inclusion of commercial driver clearing house in the bill.
The bill has passed three of four necessary committees and could be on the House floor as early as next week. “We will keep up the fight to see that these provisions cross the finish line,” Reed said.