What would you do with an extra 67 hours each year? Play with your kids? Take a nap? Finally catch up on projects around the house?
According to the TomTom traffic index, the average commuter loses 67 valuable hours each year sitting in Charlotte-area traffic.
Our region continues to be one of the fastest growing in the country, but our infrastructure has not kept pace. Money has been wasted on pet projects, and construction of critical highways is often delayed because of layers of red tape. Our aging infrastructure and declining gas tax revenues make the problem even worse.
This is a quality of life issue, but also an economic issue. Businesses rely on our highways, railroads, and airports.
As your Congressman, I am committed to passing a long-term, sustainable, and fiscally responsible highway bill. Earlier this year, I helped pass an extension of the Highway Trust Fund to support 20,000 North Carolina jobs and allow time to develop a long-term, bipartisan solution.
Local and state leaders best understand which transportation projects are needed to help recruit businesses and create jobs, and which roads need the most improvement. Washington bureaucrats aren’t sitting on I-485 or Independence Blvd. every afternoon!
In order to increase local control of transportation projects, I have co-sponsored the Transportation Empowerment Act (H.R. 2716). The TEA Act shifts federal transportation dollars from politically-favored projects back to critical needs, gives more control to the states, and eliminates unnecessary red tape and restrictions. By focusing federal dollars on interstate highways instead of pet projects, we can address the critical infrastructure needs of our communities.
Charlotte-Douglas International Airport is key to our region’s economy and job growth. Current efforts with the new airport intermodal facility are critical for economic expansion in our community and must take priority with ancillary road projects. This year, I have led bipartisan efforts to get the FAA moving on a critical project to replace the aging and outdated control tower at Charlotte-Douglas.
Inefficient management and inadequate transportation funding not only wastes our time, but slows job growth and the economy. As your Congressman, I will continue to support common-sense legislation to improve our crumbling infrastructure and grow our economy, including support of the airport, which warrants funding from Congress commensurate with these important needs.