Pascrell Pushes for Major Infrastructure Investment
Introduces NJDOT Commissioner to Testify on State Program at Key Hearing; Gateway is critical project deprived of funding by spiteful Trump administration
Washington, D.C., January 29, 2020
Today, U.S. Rep. Bill Pascrell, Jr. (D-NJ-09), New Jersey’s only member of the tax-writing House Ways and Means Committee, demanded a significant increase in funding for America’s roads, bridges, and tunnel systems. Rep. Pascrell decried neglected initiatives because of lack of federal funding in his home state of New Jersey, stressing the critical need to focus on building infrastructure for succeeding generations, priorities ignored by Republican congresses more focused on passing tax cuts for corporations and the wealthy than planning for America’s future.
“I’m from New Jersey, a place that lives and survives on our mobility. We need investment. And we have shovel-ready projects sitting, waiting for approval,” said Rep. Pascrell, a former member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. “Number one: Gateway, which will replace a century-old bridge, upgrade our train stations, and give commuters a new trans-Hudson tunnel. Its completion is essential to our future. But Gateway has been put on ice by Donald Trump and Elaine Chao to spitefully stick it to my state and neighbors. It’s time to think big. The future for my state and our nation depends on bringing our aging roads, decaying bridges, and overworked train lines back to the A+ our children can rely on. Commissioner Gutierrez-Scaccetti’s excellent testimony was especially valuable in explaining how the Garden State’s infrastructure successes can be utilized and instructive in federal reforms.”
Today’s hearing comes on the heels of the announcement this morning by the chairs of the House Committees on Transportation and Infrastructure, Energy and Commerce, and Ways and Means, of a landmark five-year, $760 billion framework to address America’s urgent infrastructure needs. One of the witnesses testifying at the Ways and Means hearing was New Jersey Department of Transportation Commissioner Diane Gutierrez- Scaccetti.
“Challenges aren’t restricted to our crumbling roads. Right now, our cities have corroded pipes. Americans in the year 2020 have lead in their drinking water. Our cities and towns must have the tools to take immediate action to replace leeching pipes with new lead-free service lines and upgrade aging sewer lines,” concluded Pascrell.
Rep. Pascrell is a consistent advocate in Washington of increased federal funding for New Jersey’s infrastructure and travel initiatives, helping secure hundreds of thousands in transportation grants and working to update crumbling tunnels and bridges. Pascrell has also led the fight in the tristate delegation to advance the much-needed Gateway Tunnel Project amidst intentional delay by the Trump government. In addition to supporting our roads, bridges, and tunnels, Rep. Pascrell has also worked to fund Teterboro Airport. He helped win a major federal investment towards increasing safety at North Jersey’s premier airport last September 2015. He also secured a $3 million federal grant to repair equipment at Teterboro Airport that was destroyed during Hurricane Sandy, as well as a $2.2 million grant to study the effects of noise pollution at the airport. Pascrell also has authored major legislation allowing investments to provide for clean wastewater systems and drinking water systems.