On behalf of the Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO (TTD), I urge you vote NO on an amendment offered by Representative Denham to the pending FY 15 T-HUD bill (H.R. 4745). This amendment would single-out one project in a single state – California high-speed rail – from receiving any funds appropriated in a bill that is supposed to fund our nation’s transportation needs.
We have never understood the partisan and ideologically driven rejection of high-speed rail generally and specifically as it relates to California. The fact is that this project will create and sustain good-paying jobs at a time when employment opportunities are still too limited and our economic recovery remains fragile. Completion of this project will provide California residents and visitors an efficient transportation option and provide access to multi-modal connections that are urgently needed. Business are looking to high-speed rail to spur economic development in a key region of the country and, voters in the state have spoken in favor of this long-term and needed investment. Yet some Members of Congress seek to dictate from Washington that California does not have the right to plan its transportation and economic future in a manner that meets its needs and realities.
I urge you to reject the Denham amendment and allow California, like the other states and regions of the country, to benefit from our national transportation investments.