On behalf of U.S. equipment manufacturers and the more than 20,000 supporters of the I Make America campaign, Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) President Dennis Slater issued the following statement congratulating the U.S. Senate on its passage today of S. 1813 - "Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century" (MAP-21):
"AEM and its more than 870 member companies, their tens of thousands of employees, and the national grassroots I Make America campaign thank the U.S. Senate for working together in a bipartisan way to pass this critical two-year reauthorization of the highway bill. Passed by a resounding bipartisan vote of 74 to 22, S. 1813 reforms the way highway programs are administered, allowing for quicker and more efficient project approval, and provides a stable source of surface transportation funding, creating the certainty state departments of transportation need to plan, and American businesses need to invest, hire and grow.
We especially commend Sen. Barbara Boxer, chair of the Environment and Public Works Committee, and Sen. James Inhofe, the committee's ranking Republican, for their persistence, dedication and commitment to the spirit of bipartisan cooperation that has resulted in this well-crafted legislation.
There is no single piece of legislation pending before Congress that will do more to immediately create American jobs and sharpen our global competitiveness. Now that the Senate has acted so decisively and by such a wide bipartisan margin, the finish line is in sight, and AEM calls on the House to move immediately to the highway bill when it returns to session next week. Only 18 days remain until the current program extension expires on March 31st. The House must follow the Senate's example, pass this legislation, and get America moving again."