Shuster: U.S. has ‘significant long-term infrastructure needs that must be addressed and responsibly paid’

Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure Chairman Bill Shuster (R-Pa.) released statement on Wednesday following the release of additional details on President Obama’s infrastructure plan.

In his statement, Shuster pointed out that he is “encouraged” by the need to reduce “red tape and streamline project delivery, including working to implement provisions from [the surface transportation bill, “Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century”] MAP-21 that can cut the time to build a highway project in half.” MAP-21 was passed in July of last year as a two-year bill that expires Sept. 30, 2014.

However, the nation still needs to find “additional opportunities to move projects ahead faster in all modes of transportation to save time and money.”

Shuster points out that what takes the Army Corps of Engineers 17 years to complete – such as a major port terminal project – only takes the private sector seven years.

“I hope the President will be willing to work with Congress on this and other long-term solutions to our substantial infrastructure needs,” Shuster said. “Our nation has significant long-term infrastructure needs that must be addressed and responsibly paid for to improve our economic competitiveness, efficiency and quality of life. I welcome the President’s interest in improving our infrastructure.  However, the President’s plan appears to be only a short-term proposal for long-term challenges.”