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ASCE to Obama: Long-term infrastructure solutions needed

In response to President Obama's comments on infrastructure in his Jan. 27 State of the Union address, ASCE has issued this statement by 2010 President Blaine D. Leonard, P.E., D.GE, F.ASCE:

We appreciate that the president mentioned in his address that railroads and the Interstate Highway System are critical investments in American infrastructure. He also spoke about how investments in infrastructure are investments in nation building. But the fact is, in recent decades we've stopped investing in our future. We are still driving on Eisenhower's roads and sending our kids to Roosevelt's schools.

The broken water mains, gridlocked streets, crumbling dams and levees, and delayed flights that come from failing infrastructure have a negative impact on the checkbook and on the quality of life of each and every American. Investing in America's infrastructure will support and create jobs -- an essential function for economic recovery -- as well as bring tangible personal benefits to Americans, like safer communities, less money spent on gas and more time with our families due to shorter commutes.

The President's leadership on infrastructure is essential for our future prosperity. We need a bipartisan commitment to create a long-term plan for our infrastructure; one that includes sufficient funding levels and dedicated revenue sources. Without that, anything we do now will be nothing more than a band-aid.

What you can do

•  Speak up and
let your state's U.S. Senators know they need to include a major infrastructure component in job-creation legislation.
•  Follow the progress of job-creation and infrastructure bills in Congress from the civil engineering perspective -- go to
ASCE's Government Relations page for updates.
•  Join the Society's grassroots advocacy program and become a Key Contact.