“It's a no-brainer: Congress should pass the bill. Now.” That’s how California Gov. Jerry Brown characterized the decision facing Congress on whether to pass President Obama’s $447 billion American Jobs Act, the legislative language of which was released in full this week. Gov. Brown’s reaction was not unique amongst state officials around the nation, dozens of whom have come out in strong support of the bill. As reports around the nation this week indicated, state economies stand to benefit significantly from the boost that would be provided by direct funding in the bill allowing them to put construction workers back to work rebuilding crumbling schools and infrastructure, and to make sure teachers, firefighters, and cops in their communities stay on the job.
President Obama this week announced a proposed $50 billion initiative to upgrade America's transportation infrastructure. While this infrastructure spending is desperately needed, and the focus on upgrading the nation's rail system will have broad economic impacts, the immediate job creation impact could be increased through greater support for local transit projects as well, as a new report by the Transportation Equity Network emphasizes.
WASHINGTON - Nearly three years after the Interstate 35W bridge
collapse, 25 percent of the country's bridges remain "structurally
deficient" or "functionally obsolete," according to testimony at a House
Transportation Subcommittee hearing Wednesday.
"It's only a matter of time before it's another one in the river," said Minnesota Rep. Tim Walz, a Democrat on the committee.
A federal appeals court may have doused a legal theory that threatened
to blow up the uneasy truce on Oregon's land-use battlefield. Acting on a
low-profile Jackson County case, a three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled this week that property development rights granted under 2004's Measure 37 aren't legal contracts.