President Obama is expected to conduct an event today calling on Congress to pass a clean extension of surface transportation funding. Officials say the president will be joined by Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka and U.S. Chamber of Commerce Chief Operating Officer David Chavern.
“The president will discuss the importance of moving forward with this extension to protect nearly a million American jobs and highlight the opportunity we have to work in a bipartisan way to further invest in rebuilding our nation’s infrastructure to strengthen our economy and create new jobs across the country,” according to a White House aide as quoted by The Huffington Post.
There is a stark difference between what the White House and Senate are backing in terms of highway transportation, versus the proposal being promoted by House Transportation and Infrastructure Chairman John Mica (R-Fla.). The Senate plan offers a two-year extension at a cost of $109 billion, while the House plan calls for a six-year plan with $230 billion in expenditures. According to the office of Senator Barbara Boxer, who chairs the Environmental and Public Works Committee, the difference between her plan and Mica’s will be the equivalent of 630,000 jobs. It remains to be seen how the highway bill will be incorporated as part of the broad-based jobs plan Obama is expected to unveil this week.
Stay tuned to the Think Concrete blog for more information tomorrow after we see what the president specifically proposes.
Obama To Call For Extension Of Transportation Funds Currently Set To Expire