HR1393 looks at giving more control to local communities on transportation projects

capitol hillA bipartisan group of senators and representatives have released a bill giving local communities more access to, and control over, a share of the federal transportation dollars that flow into their states.  Representatives Davis (R-IL), Titus (D-NV) Harper, (R-MS), Bustos (D-IL), Lipinski (D-IL) and Cartwright (D-PA) co-sponsored H.R. 1393, the Innovation in Surface Transportation Act of 2015.  HR1393 gives a greater voice to local officials, chambers of commerce and other stakeholders who best understand the transportation needs of the their communities, by creating a grant program within each state that would allow a small percentage of federal transportation dollars to be competitively bid for by eligible local entities.   Awarding more transportation dollars competitively will drive local jurisdictions to develop better, more cost-effective projects that achieve state goals and leverage more local and private dollars.

Consider reaching out to your Congressional delegation today and letting them know how important it is to provide more local control to investment in transportation.

Dear XXX,

I am writing to request that you join Representatives Davis (R-IL), Titus (D-NV) Harper, (R-MS), Bustos (D-IL), Lipinski (D-IL) and Cartwright (D-PA) in cosponsoring H.R. 1393, the Innovation in Surface Transportation Act of 2015 which would provide local communities greater access to and decision-making authority over a small share of federal transportation dollars.

Our nation’s economic strength depends upon our cities, towns, and suburbs having the resources they need to attract and retain businesses and provide opportunities for residents to prosper.  However, at the moment, the leaders of the local communities collectively driving our nation’s economy are largely shut out of the federal transportation process. In Missouri, this is especially critical with little to no support from our state delegation for transit,  and our Department of Transportation looking at continued reductions in funding for transportation.  Locally may be the only way this region has a chance to move projects forward.

H.R. 1393 gives a greater voice to the local officials, chambers of commerce and other stakeholders who best understand the transportation needs of their communities, by creating a grant program within each state that would allow a small percentage of federal transportation funds to be competitively bid for by eligible local entities.

Awarding more transportation dollars competitively will drive local jurisdictions to develop better, more cost-effective projects that achieve state goals and leverage more local and private dollars. H.R. 1393 will create a selection panel to judge the applications run jointly by our State DOT and local jurisdictions, furthering the partnership and trust between these important entities.

As a resident of the St. Louis region  where transportation projects are currently dwindling with little to no state support,  I ask you to support these efforts to provide greater decision-making responsibility and access to funding for our local jurisdictions through H.R. 1393.

Thank you for considering my request.

XXXX