CAGTC leadership is encouraged by the prospect of new infrastructure bill

Logistics Management | By Jeff Berman

Leadership for the Washington, D.C.-based Coalition for America’s Gateways and Trade Corridors (CAGTC) praised the recent passing of the $1.2 trillion infrastructure authorization that the House of Representatives signed off on late last week, following the Senate doing the same over the summer, which now awaits President Biden’s signature before becoming official.

As previously reported, the legislation includes $550 billion in new spending on highways, bridges and other transport measures and represents the most significant investment in roads and bridges in 70 years.

Following the Senate vote, CAGTC Executive Director Elaine Nessle said that this historic investment in freight infrastructure comes at a critical time and will enable strategic investments necessary to improve the nation’s supply chain infrastructure and ensure it can meet the challenges and demands of tomorrow.

What’s more, in delivering on a long-held CAGTC priority, the legislation also establishes an Office of Multimodal Freight Infrastructure and Policy within the Department of Transportation. Following months of supply chain disruptions, this office stands to guide investments from a national, systems-wide perspective with an eye toward supply chain efficiency, safety and reliability.

“The office’s leadership on holistic freight policy and planning will have an immediate impact and support economic competitiveness in the years to come,” Nessle added.

And CAGTC President Leslie Blakey likened the feeling of a new long-term authorization finally being passed to a rock being pushed uphill for so long, which kept rolling back, finally staying at the top of the hill.

But that does not mean the work stops, she explained, not by any stretch.

“Just because we have a bill does not mean we can just flip on a switch, get the money going, and everything just happens, there is a process,” she told LM. “Some parts of the bill will happen more quickly, because there are already mechanisms in place to make that money flow fairly quickly.”

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