Washington, DC — U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD), a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Subcommittee on Transportation and Infrastructure, issued the following statement on passage of the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century or “MAP-21”, the transportation reauthorization bill by the EPW Committee:
“We need more jobs in America today and investing in our nation’s highways, bridges, and transportation infrastructure is one the best federal investments this nation can make, as they are the very arteries of our nation’s commerce. In Maryland and across this country, highways are critical to growing our economy, especially during such challenging times. Passage of this bill will make a concrete difference along the Baltimore-Washington Corridor, in rural parts of our state and elsewhere, supporting thousands of well-paying jobs now and into the future.
“Deferring maintenance and repair of existing transportation assets exacerbates the decline of our roadways and the cost associated with making adequate repairs, so I am pleased that the bill passed by the EPW committee incorporates elements from my System Preservation and Renewal Program Act (S. 1193) and makes repairing and maintaining the quality of our highways a priority. Maryland has urgent transportation infrastructure projects waiting for federal support.
“I will continue to work with the managers of this legislation, which passed out of committee with unanimous support, to ensure that the final bill brought to the Senate floor for consideration better address issues like the prevention of polluted stormwater runoff from highways, improving local access to federal transportation dollars, improving traffic safety around our schools, completing the Appalachian Development Highway System running through Western Maryland, and supporting critical public transit infrastructure projects like the Baltimore Red Line and Montgomery County/Prince George’s County Purple Line.”