Mobility 21 will fight to protect federal funding for transportation,
putting thousands to work across the Southland

IRVINE, Calif. – Members of Mobility 21, Southern California’s transportation advocacy coalition, will be meeting with key legislators and policy makers this week amidst intense federal transportation bill negotiations during an advocacy trip to Washington, D.C.

Transportation executives and business leaders will call on members of Congress to pass the urgently-needed transportation bill and stay focused on what matters — job creation for millions of American workers.

“There’s no question that we need a robust federal transportation bill,” said Gary Toebben, Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce President & CEO and Mobility 21 Chairman. “What we’re asking for is a multi-year bill to give transportation planners more certainty in funding future transportation projects, and that means job creation here at home. With the extension of the current bill expiring on March 31st, we can’t afford to put this off any longer.”

Trip participants will be armed with suggestions to stretch tax dollars further, cut red tape that holds up job-creating projects and maintain global competitiveness through investment in freight movement infrastructure.

“We’re not looking for a handout from the federal government. But we do need more flexibility to better use the money we raise locally through sales tax measures,” said Art Leahy, Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority CEO and Mobility 21 Board Member. “With financing tools in America Fast Forward that make it easier to borrow money coupled with faster regulatory processes, we can deliver transportation projects years ahead of schedule and create jobs much sooner.”

Mobility 21 members will meet with Sens. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) and Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Reps. Xavier Becerra (D-Calif.), Ken Calvert (R-Calif.), Bob Filner (D-Calif.), Laura Richardson (D-Calif.), Linda Sánchez (D-Calif.), Bill Shuster (R-PA), Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood and other members of Congress integral in the passage of the transportation legislation.

“Nearly 40 percent of the nation’s goods enter the Ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles. These goods travel on freeways and railroads through the Inland Empire and out to the rest of the nation, creating 3.4 million jobs nationally and $29.9 billion in tax revenue,” said Anne Mayer, Riverside County Transportation Commission Executive Director and Mobility 21 Vice Chair. “We’re looking to Congress to invest in the national freight infrastructure assets here in Southern California.”

View Mobility 21’s legislative visit meeting materials on top priorities for 2012transportation bill recommendationsinnovative federal financing toolsthe need to protect funding for transportation, recommendations to improve federal processes that delay transportation projects and the importance of goods movement.