Top Democrat on Transportation Committee Announces Similar Make It In America Transportation Bill
WASHINGTON, DC – Congressman John Garamendi (D-Fairfield, CA), a former Member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, today applauded Transportation Committee Ranking Member Nick Rahall (D-West Virginia) for introducing H.R. 3533, the Invest in American Jobs Act, a bill that strengthens 'Buy American' requirements for federally funded infrastructure projects. The legislation is similar to Congressman Garamendi's H.R. 613, the Airports, Highways, Trains and Transit: Make it in America Act, which was introduced in 2010 and again in 2011.
"Even in the leanest of years, we spend billions of dollars in transportation and other infrastructure projects. When we use these limited resources to purchase equipment made in America, we keep that money circulating in our economy and put hardworking Americans back to work. It just makes sense," Congressman Garamendi said.
Both bills require a 100% Buy America requirement for transportation goods purchased with federal taxpayer dollars, with Garamendi's bill phasing it in over three years and Rahall's over five. Garamendi's bill eliminates more waivers, but Rahall's bill is expanded to include not just Department of Transportation projects but also Clean Water Act projects and FEMA grants.
He added, "I'm thankful my friend and colleague Ranking Member Rahall is using his sizable influence to guide our country toward smart Make It In America policies. This should be a bipartisan priority, and I hope our Republican colleagues stop playing politics and give Rep. Rahall's legislation the courtesy of the up-or-down vote it deserves."
Congressman Garamendi's legislation has been endorsed by Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART), the country's fourth largest transportation agency and the largest in California. California Governor Jerry Brown also recently signed legislation by California Assemblywoman Nancy Skinner (D-Berkeley, CA) that sets first-in-the-nation state Buy American standard.
Garamendi is also the author of similar Make It In America legislation requiring a 100% Buy American policy for clean energy purchased with federal taxpayer dollars.