February 04, 2009
WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator James Inhofe (R-Okla.), Ranking Member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, will be filing two bi-partisan amendments to dramatically increase the percentage of infrastructure spending in the stimulus bill.
“I am proud to help lead the effort in the Senate along with a bipartisan group of Senators to introduce amendments to responsibly increase infrastructure investment in the stimulus bill,” Senator Inhofe said. “Through my leadership position on the EPW Committee and as the primary author of SAFETEA I know firsthand the link between infrastructure spending, job creation, and a robust economy.
“I believe it is our duty in this stimulus bill to create as many jobs as quickly as possible. It’s not just the funding that is important, but how quickly we are able to stimulate the economy with the money in these programs.”Senator Inhofe fully supports increases in funding for infrastructure as long as they don’t add to to the cost of this already bloated bill. “We can’t just add to the size of the bill and deficit without giving priority to programs that stimulate the economy. If we are going to call this package a stimulus bill, then we need to direct resources to programs that have demonstrated ability to create jobs immediately, and all other programs must be seriously considered,” Senator Inhofe said. “Any additional funding to the stimulus needs to be offset, including infrastructure.”
The Boxer-Bond-Inhofe amendment increases highway investment by $5.5 billion. The amendment will eliminate this cumbersome new discretionary program, and merge the $5.5 billion with the $27 billion that goes out to all states as soon as the bill is enacted. This amendment provides every state additional funding.
The Inhofe-Boxer amendment takes funds not obligated within a year, up to $50 billion, from programs in the stimulus that are not spending and redirect them to infrastructure project that are ready to have a contract awarded within 120 days of receiving this money.# # #