Citing High Returns, Industrial Group Calls for Major Infrastructure Spending Plan

AASHTO Journal, 17 October 2014

The Alliance for American Manufacturing in a new report says each dollar spent on transportation infrastructure “returns $3.54 in economic impact,” and calls for a big boost to project spending through a six-year highway and transit bill.

The report was prepared for the alliance by Duke University’s Center on Globalization, Governance & Competitiveness. The AAM bills itself as a partnership between some U.S. manufacturers and the United Steelworkers union.

“It’s Time to Rebuild the U.S.A.,” the group said, with a “large-scale infrastructure upgrade. If done the right way, we can create millions of jobs and restore America’s global competitiveness.”

It said a “piecemeal” federal approach to infrastructure spending has led to “underinvestment” in U.S. transportation systems that has “cost America over 900,000 jobs – specifically, more than 97,000 manufacturing jobs – and is creating a significant drag on the economy.”

Compared with MAP-21 – the two-year, $105 billion highway/transit measure Congress passed in 2012 and extended in July through next May – the report says that “a six-year transportation bill of at least $100 billion annually would support upwards of 2.18 million American jobs and rebuild our underperforming infrastructure.”


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