DeLeo On Transportation

 Speaker Bob DeLeo, in his speech opening the 2013-'14 legislative session, focused primarily on transportation funding. Here, from his prepared remarks, is the section where he discusses the issue:

As we await MassDOT’s plan, I want to lay out some of the principles that will inform our approach to transportation:

·         The Department and Administration must consider all opportunities to bring efficiencies to our transportation operations.

·         Any transportation plan must reflect a sense of regional equity. The cost burden must not be borne by any one region nor may the plan benefit one region at the expense of other regions of the state.

·         Our roads, bridges and tunnels must be maintained in good and safe condition –worthy of the top-flight national standard that we expect our state to have and consistent with our interest in attracting employers to invest in and brings jobs to Massachusetts. I do not accept that safety must be sacrificed for the sake of fiscal solvency, and I will not accept any proposal that does not provide our citizens with the assurance their transportation infrastructure will be safe and state-of-the-art.

 As I have heard from members of our business community and civic leaders, the health of our transportation system is central to the economic future of our state. Whether we can fix the system’s existing problems and develop a future transportation infrastructure that improves the ability of workers and residents to travel around Massachusetts will be a factor in how our economy performs in the coming years. Accordingly, I am interested in learning about innovative solutions to spur transportation development.

 We all know the stakes are high. In order to implement the improvements we seek, we will have to be prepared to make investments.


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