The Congressional delegations throughout the Ports-to-Plains region have heard the recommendations of the Ports-to-Plains Alliance… And they listened.
The members of the Ports-to-Plains Caucus received and distributed the Recommendations of the Ports-to-Plains Alliance Regarding the House-Senate Conference on H.R. 4348. Many member organizations issued letters supporting those recommendations. Finally this week, the entire delegation received a letter displaying the depth of the support throughout the Ports-to-Plains Region. One hundred and ten (110) communities leaders added their names to this final letter supporting the Ports-to-Plains Alliance Recommendations. Read this Final Letter and see the signers.
Yesterday, the Alliance send the following message to the delegation that summarized our thoughts on the final Conference Report and urging final passage of the Surface Transportation Reauthorization based on the report.
The Ports-to-Plains Alliance is very pleased with the MAP 21 conference report and the inclusion of many of the Alliance’s recommendations. We encourage you to vote for the conference report.
Among the key provisions of the conference report that will benefit our corridor are:
- Critical Rural Freight Corridors Program
- Planning procedures that will provide for input from nonmetropolitan officials
- Projects of National and Regional Significance program allowing for improvements to roadways vital to national energy security
- Reduced interest rates for rural TIFIA projects
- Freight Movement and Economic Vitality goal to improve the national freight network, strengthen the ability of rural communities to access national and international trade markets, and support regional economic development
- National Freight Goals Performance Measures recognizing the need for different approaches for urban and rural areas
- University Transportation Centers Program
We believe these programs will allow Ports-to-Plains projects to effectively compete for funding. The two year extension allows some certainty in the future of the program which is essential in developing transportation projects, and especially long-term projects like Ports-to-Plains. Again, we encourage you to vote in favor of the conference report.