Friday, May 2, 2014
News Roundup

2014 State of the State: Infrastructure Mentions

It's that time of year again... Governors across the nation are making State of the State speeches to set their vision and policy agenda for 2014.

Curious how they’re prioritizing infrastructure? Reforming how projects are funded? Planning on upgrading our water infrastructure and repair our roads/bridges? BAFEF created this webpage to serve as a one-stop-shop for any infrastructure-related mentions.

As of May 2, 2014...

  • Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley (R) - January 14, 2014:

Governor Bentley knows that having a well-functioning transportation network is key to attracting new businesses to his state:  “Each of Alabama’s 67 counties has been given the opportunity to recruit more jobs, thanks to the largest road and bridge improvement program ever conducted in the state.  When companies look for places to build, expand and hire more people, they look for places that have good infrastructure."

Link to address: http://governor.alabama.gov/newsroom/2014/01/governor-bentleys-2014-state-state-address/

  • Alaska Gov. Sean Parnell (R) - January 22, 2014:

Governor Parnell knows that building the infrastructure to help make America more energy independent such as the Alaska LNG Project is good for the economy and good for job creation:  “The gasline legislation that I ask you to consider is important to create a competitive investment environment for any project that gets Alaska’s gas to Alaska’s homes and businesses.” 

Link to address: http://gov.alaska.gov/parnell/press-room/full-press-release.html?pr=6713 

  • California Gov. Jerry Brown (D) - January 22, 2014:

Recognizing the role that uncertain weather patterns can have on infrastructure, Governor Brown is taking action: “Among all our uncertainties, weather is one of the most basic.  We can’t control it.  We can only live with it, and now we have to live with a very serious drought of uncertain duration.   Right now it is imperative that we do everything possible to mitigate the effects of the drought.  I have convened an interagency Drought Task Force and declared a State of Emergency.  We need everyone in every part of the state to conserve water.  We need regulators to rebalance water rules and enable voluntary transfers of water and we must prepare for forest fires.  As the State Water Action Plan lays out, water recycling, expanded storage and serious groundwater management must all be part of the mix.  So too must be investments in safe drinking water, particularly in disadvantaged communities.”

Link to address: http://gov.ca.gov/news.php?id=18373

  • Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper (D) - January 9, 2014:

Governor Hickenlooper understands the value of partnering with the private sector to deliver needed infrastructure:  “Economic development demands infrastructure.  We will propose the formation of a non-profit enterprise dedicated to fostering public-private partnerships to fund infrastructure projects such as transportation and water.  This will not only bolster economic development, it will also lighten the burden on taxpayers and harness minds and resources outside of government to address unmet needs and keep Colorado competitive.”

Link to address: http://www.colorado.gov/cs/Satellite?c=Page&childpagename=GovHickenlooper%2FCBONLayout&cid=1251649620018&pagename=CBONWrapper

  • Delaware Gov. Jack Markell (D) - January 23, 2014:

Governor Markell knows that:  “Unleashing the potential of our economy also demands world-class infrastructure.”   “….Infrastructure investments create high-paying, middle-class jobs and they lay the foundation for future prosperity.  It’s time to stop complaining about the sorry shape of our Transportation Trust Fund and fix the underlying issues.  I propose that we invest $1.1 billion over five years, a $500 million increase over our current financial plan.  Let’s improve our transportation network for generations to come and put thousands of Delawareans to work.” 

Link to address: http://governor.delaware.gov/speeches/2014StateOfTheState/index.shtml

  • Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal (R) - January 15, 2014:

Governor Deal knows that infrastructure investment is linked to job growth and economic development:  “There are many ingredients in the recipe for job growth.  I have already mentioned the importance of favorable tax policies.  In addition it requires adequate infrastructure so that people, as well as raw materials and finished products, can move freely within our state.  This general assembly has already made changes to funding formulas so that interstate projects and freight corridors will be prioritized.  In the budget I am submitting to you, I have included $35 million for the deepening of the Port of Savannah.  If approved, we will have $266 million, which will represent Georgia’s share of this important project.  I intend for us to start dredging this year!  This was first authorized by Congress in 1999.  Approximately 50 percent of the cost of this project has been approved by four separate federal agencies.  We have studied and planned long enough.  It’s time to start moving dirt!”

Link to address: https://gov.georgia.gov/press-releases/2014-01-15/deal-deep-freeze-over-georgia%E2%80%99s-economy-warms

  • Idaho Gov. Butch Otter (R) - January 6, 2014:

Governor Otter knows that targeted infrastructure investments such as he has proposed for the sustainability of the water supply are key to his state’s greater long term stability:  “My budget includes $15 million in one-time spending for specific water supply improvement projects from Mountain Home to Rathdrum and from Island Park to Arrowrock.”

Link to address: http://gov.idaho.gov/mediacenter/speeches/sp_2014/State%20of%20the%20State%202014%20(2).pdf

  • Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn (D) - January 29, 2014:

Governor Quinn knows that : “Our businesses need modern bridges, highways, railroads, and water systems.  A sound infrastructure is critical to a strong economy.  In the last five years, through our Illinois Jobs Now! Program, we’ve invested more than $31 billion into our infrastructure – and this has supported more than 400,000 jobs.  Thanks to these investments, we constructed the Morgan Street Bridge in Rockford.  We’re building a wider Route 13 in Southern Illinois.  We’re expanding John Deere Road in the Quad Cities.  And construction is underway on the new Circle Interchange to relieve congestion on the Eisenhower, Kennedy and Dan Ryan expressways.  After years of gridlock, we’re moving forward on our plan to build a South Suburban Airport.  And we’re making the Illiana Expressway a reality, which will create thousands of jobs and strengthen our position as the largest inland port in the nation.  Through our Clean Water Initiative, we’re investing more than $1 billion in clean water – and creating 28,000 jobs along the way.  And these are good jobs:  jobs for welders, cement masons, truck drivers, operating engineers, pipefitters, painters and carpenters.”

Link to address: http://www2.illinois.gov/gov/Documents/State%20of%20the%20State/2014%20SOTS%20ADDRESS.pdf

  • Indiana Gov. Mike Pence (R) - January 14, 2014:

Governor Pence understands the link between smart infrastructure investments and jobs:  “Because roads mean jobs, we need to release $400 million for the next era of highway expansion and put people to work now.”

Link to address: http://www.in.gov/activecalendar/EventList.aspx?view=EventDetails&eventidn=155464&information_id=194036&type=&syndicate=syndicate

  • Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad (R) - January 14, 2014:

Governor Branstad knows that in order to expand economic opportunity, 21st century technologies must be widely accessible:  “Today I propose The Connect Every Iowan Act, with incentives to encourage access, adoption and use of broadband technology by business and individuals.” “…..Together we can use broadband technology to grow the Iowa Dream throughout our state, especially in rural areas.  As our connection speeds increase, so does the pace of our economic progress, so does our ability to grow jobs, and so does our ability to turn the Iowa Dream into reality. ”

Link to address: https://governor.iowa.gov/2014/01/gov-branstad-delivers-2014-condition-of-the-state-iowa-is-working/

  • Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback (R) - January 15, 2014:

Governor Brownback understands the importance of having a safe and reliable water supply:  “If the three millionth Kansan is to stay and build a life here then we must leave her a state with access to our lifeblood, water.  And we are expending the liquid capital of our state.  As many of you came into this building tonight, you saw the words of our greatest Kansan, Dwight Eisenhower.  Ike said, ‘The opportunist thinks of me and today.  The statesman thinks of us and tomorrow.’  It’s no coincidence that much of the water infrastructure we’re spending through today was built in Ike’s time.  The fact is that from our reservoirs to our aquifers, we are relying on wise decisions made generations ago.  Those who come after us deserve that same statesmanship.  Throughout this year, people from across the state will gather to develop a comprehensive water strategy – a strategy to secure our water future for the next 50 years.  Without water…there is no future. “  

Link to address: https://governor.ks.gov/media-room/media-releases/2014/01/16/2014-state-of-the-state-of-kansas

  • Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear (D) - January 7, 2014:

Governor Beshear understands the importance of moving forward with important bridge projects that will connect communities and create jobs:  “These bridge projects in both regions are strongly supported by their respective business communities because of the projects’ dual economic impacts:  Short-term they’ll create construction jobs, and long-term they’ll improve capacity by moving commerce and commuters for decades to come.”

Link to address: http://governor.ky.gov/Speeches/20140107_SOTC.pdf

  • Maine Gov. Paul LePage (R) - February 4, 2014:

Governor LePage understands the link between well functioning infrastructure and growing his state’s economy:  “To strengthen Maine’s economy, we must invest our resources to improve infrastructure, reduce taxes, and lower energy costs for homeowners and businesses.  Industry needs infrastructure to move goods and services at the speed of business.  Over the next three years, MaineDOT will invest over $2 billion in infrastructure improvements.  We will repair or replace 54 bridges and reconstruct hundreds of miles of state roads.  We will improve our ports, rail, airports and transit infrastructure.  The plan supports over 25,000 jobs in highway and bridge projects.  Thousands more jobs will be supported by the plan’s investments in ports, rail, ferries and buses.  That’s putting Maine to work.”

Link to address: http://www.maine.gov/tools/whatsnew/index.php?topic=Gov_Speeches&id=614018&v=article2011

  • Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley - January 23, 2014:

Governor O’Malley knows that making the right strategic investments results in greater opportunity and economic growth:  “To strengthen and grow our middle class – this has been the North Star of everything that we have done as an Administration.  Our fiscal discipline.  Our strategic investments.  Our different way of governing for results.  Together, here in Maryland: …We are investing more than ever in our transportation infrastructure, to get more of our people back to work.”

Link to address: http://www.governor.maryland.gov/blog/?p=9788

  • Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick (D) - January 28, 2014:

Governor Patrick knows that a world-class economy needs modern and reliable infrastructure:  “And let’s keep building our infrastructure.  This year, we will open the Assembly Square station in Somerville and the Yawkey station in Boston; increase commuter rail service to Worcester; resume seasonal service to the Cape;  and launch automated tolling.  With your help, Mr. Speaker and Madame President, we can begin construction on the Silver Line to Chelsea, the I-91 viaduct in Springfield, and the last mile of broadband in underserved communities.  We can hire the builder for the new Red Line and Orange line trains, and start building them right here in Massachusetts.  And yes, in this year, we can accelerate construction on South Coast Rail.  So, I ask the Legislature to pass the bond bills before you now so that we can put more people to work and deliver the public works worthy of a world-class economy.  Let’s keep going.”  

Link to address: http://www.mass.gov/governor/pressoffice/speeches/0128-governor-patrick-delivers-state-of-the-commonwealth.html

  • Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton (D) - April 30, 2014:

Governor Dayton knows that without a modern and reliable transportation network economic growth would be impacted:   “Improved transportation is also essential to support economic growth and a Better Minnesota.  Unfortunately, Minnesota’s highways, roads, bridges, and public transit systems have been underfunded for the past quarter-century.  Federal funds, state gas tax revenues, license fees, and other traditional sources of transportation funding have not kept pace with escalating project costs.  Every day, Minnesotans everywhere suffer the consequences of that serious underfunding.  Congested freeways.  Unsafe two-lane highways. Deteriorating roads and bridges.  Inadequate public transit systems.  Inadequate transportation systems stifle economic growth and cost jobs.” 

Link to address: http://mn.gov/governor/blog/the-office-of-the-governor-blog-entry-detail.jsp?id=102-128370

  • Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon (D) - January 21, 2014:

In laying out his policy priorities for 2014 Governor Nixon knows that having a modern transportation network is a key ingredient to economic success:  “We need to have a robust discussion about our state’s long term transportation infrastructure needs – and how to pay for them.”

Link to address: http://governor.mo.gov/news/archive/gov-nixon-delivers-2014-state-state-address-0

  • New Hampshire Gov. Maggie Hassan (D) - February 6, 2014:

Governor Hassan knows that the key to keeping her state’s economy moving forward is addressing its infrastructure challenges from transportation to broadband to energy:  “We know that a solid, modern transportation infrastructure is the foundation for long-term economic growth, and I appreciate that there is broad agreement in the legislature about the need to strengthen investment in our roads and bridges.”  

“…..A modern economy’s infrastructure must also include broadband, especially if our rural communities  are to compete.  Through Network New Hampshire Now, public agencies, private groups and the telecommunications industry came together and helped expand critical broadband access to unserved and underserved areas of our state, reaching into every country.  We must keep working together and support ongoing efforts to extend broadband down the last miles to every business, home and community.”

“Businesses, families and seniors also need reliable – and affordable – energy to continue to grow and prosper…As we develop our long-term plan, though, we must take additional steps to reduce energy costs.  While a domestic energy boom is making fuels like natural gas as plentiful as ever, New England still suffers from being at the end of the pipeline.  Expanding natural gas pipeline capacity for our region is one way to reduce energy costs in New Hampshire.”

Link to address: http://www.governor.nh.gov/media/speeches/state-of-state-2014.htm

  • New Mexico Gov. Susanna Martinez (R) - January 21, 2014:

Governor Martinez knows “Just as a strong workforce is the lifeblood of an economy, infrastructure serves as an economy’s foundation.  Sadly, New Mexico’s water infrastructure is in a state of crisis.”  “…If we invest in water infrastructure in a way that benefits each of our unique local economies, we will not only create jobs in the short run, but also set the stage for long-term economic growth.” “….Building and repairing our water infrastructure has never been more important.  Everyone agrees on this.  That is why I’m asking that we invest 60 percent of our capital dollars on critical water projects throughout New Mexico.”

Link to address: http://governor.state.nm.us/uploads/PressRelease/191a415014634aa89604e0b4790e4768/Governor_Susana_Martinez_Delivers_State_of_the_State_Address.pdf

  • New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) - January 8, 2014:

Governor Cuomo touched on many aspects of infrastructure in his speech from the importance of having a modern and reliable infrastructure to making infrastructure more resilient  “We have to rebuild our infrastructure because we need a 21st century infrastructure to build on. “ “We have to totally harden our transit system.  When we built the New York City transit system we didn’t envision floods that could fill the subway system.”    “We will repair and replace over 100 bridges in Upstate New York with new state-of-the-art bridges that are designed to maintain their structural integrity, given the flood that we’re dealing with.” 

Link to address: http://www.governor.ny.gov/press/01092014-transcript-2014-sos

  • Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R) - February 24, 2014:

Governor Kasich knows that economic growth and reliable infrastructure are key ingredients to making his state more competitive:  “We’re rebuilding our highways without a gas tax increase and helping our cities and towns rebuild their roads and bridges, and we’re using the untapped potential of our turnpike to make these efforts as strong as possible.  As we rebuild our economy, we are rebuilding the infrastructure of the state of Ohio.”

Link to address: http://governor.ohio.gov/Portals/0/2014%20State%20of%20the%20State%20Final%20Transcript.pdf

  • Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin (R) - February 3, 2014:

Governor Fallin knows that infrastructure isn’t just about roads and bridges, properly maintaining important government buildings is also a government responsibility:  “Just as it’s our responsibility to help maintain a motivated and skilled workforce in state government, it’s also our responsibility to maintain and preserve state buildings and assets.  In the case of the state Capitol, we are failing in that goal.  In fact, this building has become a safety hazard.  We are doing a great disservice to our state and its citizens by allowing the Capitol to crumble around us…….We must begin repairing the People’s House now.  The best, most realistic way to accomplish this is through a bond issue….Passing a bond issue is the right thing to do.  I have put money towards bond issue payments in my executive budget, and I’m asking the Legislature to pass a bond issue and send it to my desk as soon as possible.”

Link to address: http://www.ok.gov/governor/documents/2-3-14%202014%20State%20of%20the%20State%20press%20copy%20final.pdf

  • Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett (R) - February 4, 2014:

Governor Corbett knows that it takes a bipartisan effort to tackle the state’s transportation funding challenges:  “For years, this state needed a sustained, large-scale investment in transportation.  And somehow it just never got done.  We did things a little differently, and we got a different result.  Republican and Democrat.  Labor and industry.  We all worked together to put the funding crisis behind us and do what is right for the people of Pennsylvania.  The construction season coming up will give us just a glimpse of the benefits.  And far into the future, Pennsylvania will have the good roads, safe bridges, and reliable public transit that our people expect and deserve.”

Link to address: http://www.pa.gov/Pages/NewsDetails.aspx?agency=Governors%20Office&item=15243#.UvFB_tGA3cs

  • Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee (I) - January 15, 2014:

Governor Chafee knows that traffic congestion negatively impacts economic development and quality of life and that a robust transit system must be a key part of the state’s transportation network:  “Congestion and gridlock are becoming more commonplace throughout the state.  Therefore I propose a $40 million bond to be placed on the November ballot.  These funds will be used to undertake major enhancements and renovations to mass transit hub systems at key locations in our state.  To facilitate this work, I have included $250,000 from the Rhode Island Capital Plan Fund for the preliminary design of this new hub strategy.  As we all know, good mass transit will spur economic growth.”

Link to address: http://www.governor.ri.gov/documents/speeches/2014_SOS_Budget_Address.pdf

  • South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley (R) - January 22, 2014:

Governor Haley understands that having safe and reliable access to the Port of Charleston is vital for the state’s and region’s economic growth:  “Infrastructure must also remain a priority.  We are blessed to have, in the Port of Charleston, an asset that is the envy of our friends and competitors in states across the nation.  Year after year we are breaking export record after export record.  But our port is only as good as our manufacturers’ ability to get their product to it – quickly, safely, and cheaply.  Last year, using revenue we already had, we were able to pass into law the largest investment in South Carolina’s roads and bridges in more than two decades.  A billion dollars.  And we did it without raising taxes.  South Carolinians are about to see orange cones popping up all across our state.  It’s a beautiful thing.”

Link to address: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014/jan/22/text-of-gov-haleys-state-of-the-state-address/?page=all#pagebreak

  • South Dakota Gov. Dennis Daugaard (R) - January 14, 2014:

Recognizing the benefits derived from smart infrastructure investments, Governor Daugaard proposed a change to prioritize state contributions to the recently created Building South Dakota Fund that uses infrastructure investment as a means to enhance economic development efforts:  “Under current law, budget surpluses are transferred into budget reserves as part of our rainy day funds at the end of the fiscal year.  I am proposing to change that in certain circumstances.  Under my proposal, the first priority for surplus funds will be to keep our rainy day funds at 10 percent of the general fund appropriations for the year just ended.  Once that is met, the second priority will be to automatically pre-fund Building South Dakota, so that the program is always funded at least one year in advance.”   “…..Building South Dakota created some important new tools to aid our economic development efforts.  Thanks to our favorable business climate, we have already seen many businesses expand and add jobs over the past three years.” 

Link to address: http://sd.gov/governor/docs/2014%20State%20of%20State%20transcript.pdf

  • Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D) - January 13, 2014:

Governor McAuliffe understands that smart infrastructure investments must have quantifiable economic benefits.  He knows that “Virginia’s ability to compete economically is also shaped by the quality of our transportation system.”     The Governor pledged to work with the Legislature to implement last year’s historic transportation bill by saying:  “I will work to honor that achievement by spending every dollar wisely; and seek to deliver projects on time and on budget.”

Link to address: https://governor.virginia.gov/news/newsarticle?articleId=2572

  • Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D) - January 14, 2014:

Governor Inslee said “If education is the heart of our economy, then transportation is the backbone.  That’s why we need a transportation investment package.  If we do not act, our state will face a 52 percent decrease in the maintenance budget for bridges and roads in the next two years.  If we do not act, 71 additional bridges will become structurally deficient.”

Link to address: http://governor.wa.gov/news/speeches/2014SOSAddress.pdf

  • West Virginia Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin (D) - January 8, 2014:

Governor Tomblin knows that the key to economic development are smart infrastructure investments:  “As we celebrate these new investments, there are other types of investments we often take for granted:  investments in water and sewer infrastructure, schools, airports, rail, intermodal facilities, and broadband.  Used by all of us, roads and bridges are one of the biggest investments and they come at a cost.  This Legislature, in a bipartisan fashion, had the wisdom and foresight to enact two pieces of legislation last year that are already paying off for our State Road Fund.  The continuation of Design-Build and Public-Private Partnerships is allowing the Division of Highways to be more innovative in the construction of our roads and bridges.” 

Link to address: http://www.governor.wv.gov/media/pressreleases/2014/Pages/GOVERNOR-DELIVERS-STATE-OF-THE-STATE-ADDRESS.aspx

  • Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) - January 22, 2014:

Governor Walker knows that smart investments in infrastructure create economic growth and have the added benefit of providing jobs:  “Yet another way to improve the economy is to put people to work building and maintaining our infrastructure.  After my predecessor raided more than $1 billion from the state transportation fund, we reversed that trend.  In our current budget, we invest $6.4 billion into the state transportation system. “ “….Good roads and bridges and freight rail and ports and transit and airports are important to more than just construction workers, they are vital to a thriving economy.  All sorts of industries rely on a strong transportation system:  manufacturers, farmers, miners, loggers, retailers, and many others.”

Link to address: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014/jan/22/text-of-gov-walkers-state-of-the-state-speech/?page=all#pagebreak

  • Wyoming Gov. Matt Mead (R) - February 10, 2014:

Governor Mead knows that the key to economic success in the 21st century is to have 21st century transportation and water systems:  ”We are in a great position to invest in our people, infrastructure, and communities…I recommend the funds needed, about $15.7 million for a unified network.  The unified network is the interstate highway of the 21st century, which gives our rural state the same technological advantages as urban states.  It is vital infrastructure that will keep Wyoming competitive.”

“…we need to develop a state water strategy….I talked about water projects in my campaign and in office.  Water projects are expensive, take time, and the permitting is difficult.  They are easy to put off until tomorrow, but I submit today is the day to begin.  We must all begin to push for water projects – big and small, for ag, industry, wildlife and other purposes.  It will be a great legacy of the Legislature to say we did all we can to protect Wyoming water.”

Link to address: http://governor.wy.gov/Documents/2014%20State%20of%20the%20State%20Address.pdf

 

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