ASCE Issues 2009 Infrastructure Report Card
Last week the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) issued their 2009 Infrastructure Report Card. Overall America's infrastructure urned a 'D,' hardly a score you'd want to bring home to mother.
The study, conducted every four years, grades 15 areas of national infrastructure from aviation to roads to waste water. The 2009 scores are very similar to grades from 2005. On their website, ASCE explains the rationale behind the grades. They also offer "5 Key Solutions" to improve our infrastructure capacity; the first solution - increased federal leadership.
For more information about the Infrastructure Report Card, click HERE.
LaHood to Meet with State Tranport Bosses
Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood has announced that he will meet with the heads of all the state departments of transportation sometime in the coming weeks. On the agenda - the economic stimulus package and specifically its lack of earmarks.
The former Republican Congressman from Peoria, IL also stressed that transparency will be a top priority:
"What I'm saying is that when money goes out the door, it'll be on the Web site," he said. "I've been in public service for 30 years ... I've read all the horror stories (about misspent government money) and we're going to avoid that."
Click HERE to read the full article from the Chicago Tribune.
This announcement reinforces the influence that Governors and state department heads will have over the allocationof stimulus package funds. Local chambers should make sure they are communicating their infrastructure priorities to the appropriate state officials.
Card Check Op-Eds
Here are two good examples of editorials about the Employee Free Choice Act, one from the Washington Times and one from the Raleigh News and Observer. The N&O piece is authored by North Carolina Chamber President Lew Ebert. The Times piece references a 2001 letter from Congressional Democrats to Mexico stressing the importance of the secret ballot for union elections, and Sen. George McGovern's indictment of Card Check. We have covered both of those items here on the Clearinghouse Blog.
Card Check Timing
I've recently caught some speculation in the news about when Congress may bring up the Employee Free Choice Act. Right now it seems like Card Check is not atop the agenda.
The Las Vegas Sun reported last Tuesday that Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid said of Card Check, "We're going to get that, we're hoping to get to it sometime this summer." Click HERE to read the article. Reid's comments were made at the official signing of the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act.
Vice President Joe Biden has also indicated that movement on the EFCA is not imminent. When asked about Card Check in an interview with CNBC last Thursday, said:
"...there's only so much on the plate these first couple months. Everyone understands - I think both of us thought 10 months ago that this would be a top-priority item in terms of immediate action. We know there's probably going to be some compromise here."
Click HERE for the article from Politico.com.