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Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act funds must focus on critical freight infrastructure

| November 22, 2021

DOT Misses Opportunity with RAISE Grants Says ATA

The American Trucking Associations expressed disappointment as the Department of Transportation directed millions of dollars in federal funding toward localized and low-value projects, rather than focusing on critical freight infrastructure of national priority.

“At a time when the entire nation is focused on supply chain challenges, the Department of Transportation missed a real opportunity with this tranche of RAISE grants,” said ATA President and CEO Chris Spear. “Bike paths and greenspaces might be nice things to have, but they pale in comparison to the importance and urgency of unclogging our ports and highways.”

The DOT’s Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity, or RAISE, grants directed nearly $200 million of this year’s $1 billion funding pool to bicycle and pedestrian projects. Only 16 of the 63 capital projects are for actual road safety and mobility improvements.

“With the RAISE program now set to receive a significant boost in funding following the passage of Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill, it’s critical these funds go to projects of national impact, such as intermodal connectors and freight bottlenecks along the National Highway System,” Spear said. “Projects with primarily local benefits should be funded locally – not with federal dollars. 

“Furthermore, we urge Congress to provide the oversight necessary to ensure that future awards are not similarly squandered,” he said.
 

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