Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett today joined Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, Senate President Thomas V. Mike Miller, Jr. and Speaker of the House Michael E. Busch at the bill signing for the Transportation Infrastructure Investment Act of 2013. Leggett has been an outspoken advocate for an increase in transportation funding revenues.
“The Washington region has the dubious distinction of being rated number one in the nation as having the worst traffic congestion and that is why Montgomery County’s number one priority for more than 10 years has been to obtain more transportation funding,” said Leggett. “For six years, I have strongly advocated for an increase in the state’s gasoline tax, which hasn’t risen since 1992 when George Bush Sr. was President. Since then, I have testified at every hearing on this issue and have been relentless in its support.”
“This historic transportation bill allows us to move forward with the first new major transportation projects in more than eight years,” said O’Malley. “Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett has been a consistently strong advocate and working together with legislative leaders and members of the General Assembly, we have guaranteed a sustainable transportation funding source that will provide a safer, more efficient transportation network, spur economic development and support more than 57,200 jobs”
The Act increases revenues from the sale of gasoline for the first time in a generation. Revenue from the bill is estimated at $4.4 billion over the next six years, boosting economic development in the County. The funds will be dedicated to new roads and mass transit projects, including the Purple Line, the Corridor Cities Transitway and a backlog of major road projects.
“County Executive Leggett has been at the forefront of fighting for more mass transit solutions to help alleviate traffic congestion in the Washington Region,” said Prince George’s County Executive Rushern L. Baker, III. “Like me, he understands that an investment in our infrastructure will improve the quality of life for residents and create jobs and opportunities. Ike has been a leader and it is always a pleasure to work with him. I consider him the dean of local County Executives and he has been a stalwart champion for more transportation funding. Transportation is extremely important to Montgomery County and Prince Georges County residents and they deserve a better transportation network. County Executive Leggett gets it and we will continue to pursue this goal for the people we serve.”
“I want to acknowledge the leadership of Ike Leggett and the partnership we’ve formed as we work together to find solutions to our transportation needs,” said Howard County Executive Kenneth S. Ulman. “We are truly interconnected as a region, and we need to think regionally about jobs and transportation. We have to make wise investments to help people get to jobs and build the job centers of the future. Ike shares that vision with me.”
“The Act will help replenish the State’s Transportation Trust Fund and assist counties throughout the state to advance major transportation infrastructure,” said Leggett. “The Bill is essential to the future vibrancy of Montgomery County, the state’s key economic development engine and job creator. We now have the means to move forward on our major master plans that incorporate investment in new transportation infrastructure.”
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