New Orleans mayor joins call for infrastructure funding solutions

New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu has called on Congress to find long-term funding solutions for U.S. infrastructure repair and uprade needs. | Contributed photo

New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu pledged his support on Thursday to the national call on Congress for long-term solutions to fund repairs and upgrades on roads, bridges and other infrastructure.

In a report from the American Public Transportation Association (APTA), proposed cuts to transportation funding could potentially cost the national economy up to $227 billion in economic-activity losses. 

Landrieu joins mayors, transportation providers, business leaders and other groups nationwide in calling for transportation funding support. 

"As we’ve shown in New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina, investment in transportation and infrastructure not only creates jobs, but connects our residents to the tens of thousands of jobs being created across our region,” Landrieu said in a statement.

“Diverse, adequate and dependable transportation alternatives ensure that every resident has the opportunity to share in our city’s economic growth – benefiting both families and job creators. Statewide, a federal study released just this week shows that more than 1,800 bridges throughout Louisiana are in need of repair as the state faces a severe budget crisis. Our needs are great, and we must take immediate action. I call on Congress to push politics aside and renew this transportation bill so that we can create jobs, connect families to those jobs and once again invest in America’s future.”

Landrieu also said federal investment has been lacking as the need for infrastructure improvements continues to grow. Landrieu said public-transit maintenance costs are backlogging, exceeding $77 billion, and the backlog of overall infrastructure requires approximately $160 billion for it to be brought to a "state of good repair" status.