(TRENTON) — Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto (D-Hudson) issued a multimedia package Thursday, following the Assembly Budget Committee’s release of legislation — sponsored by Speaker Prieto — that would authorize and secure new funding for New Jersey’s Transportation Trust Fund (TTF).
The TTF, once regarded as a national model for transportation finance, runs out of money on July 1. Speaker Prieto’s legislation sets out a 10-year, $20 billion capital transportation program for the state’s highway and rail infrastructure (A-10) and secures dedicated funding for the plan (A-11).
The multimedia package consists of Speaker Prieto discussing the need for reauthorizing funding for the TTF and the positive economic impact such a re-authorization would have and audio and a transcript of same.
The video can be accessed directly via our website — www.assemblydems.com — or by clicking here.
The audio file is available upon request.
A transcript of comments from Speaker Prieto is appended below:
Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto (D-Hudson):
“We have in the State of New Jersey a problem with our Transportation Trust Fund. It’s for road infrastructure and it’s something that every penny we collect right now of revenue goes down to pay debt.
“So obviously, we have a lot of needs in the State of New Jersey. Thirty-six percent of our bridges are either obsolete or structurally deficient and we have 11 million residents that ride over them every day. As anybody that rides the roads, they know there’s potholes, there’s cost associated with that: the average cost of wear and tear from repairs that is due to roads are about $600 a year for the average driver.
“So, we need to be able to get a funding source.
“So, I’ve been talking about this for over three years, that we needed to invest in our transportation infrastructure. And there was one way of doing it, is to get a sustainable source of revenue to be able to do these projects. And, as I’ve said all along, this is pivotal for us to fix our road infrastructure.
“It’s a key domino that we need to knock first, because our economic future depends on it. So, if we don’t invest in them, then we’re not doing our job. And by investing that money will then, in turn, come back into our economy. They say for every dollar you invest in your transportation infrastructure, you get four dollars in return. That is a great win for the residents of the State of New Jersey.
“The economy of New Jersey needs this. It needs a jolt. It needs to put these people back to work, create jobs and, in turn to make New Jersey a better state to live in.”