Transportation and Infrastructure
Making long-term investments in transportation and infrastructure stimulates the economy, creates jobs, and drives commerce. It is also an opportunity to rebuild systems in a sustainable and resilient manner, reduce carbon emissions, improve energy efficiency, and support vulnerable communities. New infrastructure programs should invest in projects that reduce pollution and use natural infrastructure solutions.
The needs of surface transportation infrastructure are widely and rightfully recognized. But in the Northwest, we know that a comprehensive infrastructure package needs to go beyond roads and bridges. Investing in infrastructure must also include accessible public transit, building affordable housing, upgrading water systems, repairing ports, modernizing public schools, and strengthening decarbonized transportation systems in a resilient and sustainable manner. I’m focused on the federal responsibility to improve infrastructure and upgrade our multi-modal transportation system. Smart transportation projects, like the Newberg-Dundee Bypass and the Southwest Corridor Light Rail, will help more people get to work, school, and other destinations in the community more quickly and reliably while also reducing emissions by decreasing the number of vehicles on our roads. These projects also recognize the need to enhance our resiliency in advance of a Cascadia Subduction Zone event in the Northwest.
Finally, federal investment in infrastructure will create needed construction jobs in our communities. I’ll pursue every opportunity to make sure that all workers—especially women and people of color who traditionally haven’t worked in construction—have access to the training and supports needed to qualify for these jobs, and will work to make sure that minority and women owned small businesses can compete for these federal contracts.
More on Transportation and Infrastructure
In late 2020, DeFazio, Oregon’s two U.S. Senators and Reps. Earl Blumenauer, Kurt Schrader and Suzanne Bonamici sent the Corps of Engineers a letter asking for additional support for harbor repairs and improvements at Coos Bay, Depoe Bay and Tillamook. “Our harbors along the Oregon coast can be particularly challenging due to unpredictable weather, the increasing intensity of storms, and especially dangerous wave conditions at our entrance channels,” the group wrote.
U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden and U.S. Sen. Jeff Merkley, along with U.S. Rep. Suzanne Bonamici, recently wrote a letter to Adm. Karl Schultz, the commandant of the Coast Guard, requesting that two additional cutters be stationed locally. “The community of Astoria is well-equipped to support the Coast Guard and its vessels in their mission here in Oregon,” the lawmakers wrote.
Bonamici congratulated Rainier for the completion of the project. “It took everyone working together, and it’s really a testament to the perseverance of this community,” she said.
The U.S. Postal Service is studying whether Warrenton needs a new post office after pressure from members of Oregon’s congressional delegation. U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden and Rep. Suzanne Bonamici, who visited the city’s aging post office near the corner of Harbor Drive and Main Avenue in August, wrote to U.S. Postmaster General Louis DeJoy last month about its inadequate condition.
U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden and U.S. Rep. Suzanne Bonamici — Democrats of Oregon — stood side by side with U.S. Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, a Washington state Republican, to extol the benefits of the project to the region.
“They’re not just rocks in the water,” Wyden said. “They are linchpins for navigation. Without those jetties … we cannot have big league quality of life and job creation. It just simply doesn’t happen.”
House Democrats on Tuesday will issue an ambitious plan to combat climate change, a move intended to reassure their base of supporters but that’s sure to inflame opponents on the right.
The proposal will be released at an event at the U.S. Capitol with Speaker Nancy Pelosi and several other Democratic lawmakers.
Two lawmakers from Oregon are looking into how much people with diabetes pay for the insulin they need.
Sen. Jeff Merkley introduced the End Price Gouging for Insulin Act following a report prepared for fellow Democratic Rep. Suzanne Bonamici found that people in the region pay about $1,000 more a year on insulin than people in other countries — a "rip-off" according to Merkley.