A coalition of construction and labor groups launched an advertising blitz today targeting four members of a congressional conference committee urging them to complete action on a new highway and transit bill. Noting that there are over 1,600 deficient bridges combined in their four districts, the radio ads ask constituents to urge their members of Congress to make sure a transportation bill is completed to help fix local roads, bridges and transit systems.
Legislation reauthorizing federal highway and transit programs is nearly three years overdue. The programs have been operating under a series of short-term extensions. The latest, the ninth, expires June 30.
“With billions of dollars at stake, and thousands of good paying jobs, it is time for Congress to take action,” the new radio ads note. They ask “will your congressman be part of the problem, or part of the transportation solution?”
The four members of Congress – Dave Camp (R-MI), James Lankford (R-OK), Steve Southerland (R-FL) and Pat Tiberi (R-OH) are all members of the congressional conference committee that is currently negotiating a new bill. The bill would allow the federal transportation program, which invests nearly $60 billion a year in highway, bridge and transit improvements, to continue after the June 30 expiration.
The ads, which were developed by the Washington, D.C.-based Transportation Construction Coalition (TCC), ask constituents to contact the district offices of the congressmen and urge them to make sure a new transportation bill is completed on time. They note that most jobs today depend on a good transportation system, either to get workers to jobs on time, allow deliveries to happen on schedule, or make sure parts and supplies arrive in time for installation.
The four members of Congress are being targeted either because this is the first time they have been involved in negotiating a transportation bill (Southerland and Lankford) or because they serve on finance and tax committees in Congress and are in a position to help ensure the federal transportation program has adequate funding to improve road, bridge and transit quality and safety (Camp and Tiberi).
The ads will run during morning and afternoon drive time from Wednesday, June 13 through Friday, June 15.