Congressman Cohen Applauds Introduction of INVEST in America Act
MEMPHIS – Congressman Steve Cohen (TN-09), a senior member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, today applauded introduction of the Investing in a New Vision for the Environment and Surface Transportation (INVEST) in America Act.
Congressman Cohen noted that it incorporates several of his priorities including his bill, H.R. 1400, the Horse Transportation Safety Act. It also incorporates many elements of his other bills including H.R. 1511, the Stop Underrides Act, H.R. 3959, the School Bus Safety Act and H.R. 3663, the Complete Streets Act.
- Regarding H.R. 1511, the INVEST in America Act strengthens safety in commercial motor vehicles by directing the Department of Transportation (DOT) Secretary to strengthen rear underride guard standards in newly manufactured trailers and semi-trailers; to further research and consider the feasibility, benefits, and costs associated with installing side underride guards; and creates an Advisory Committee on Underride Protection.
- Regarding H.R. 3959, the INVEST in America Act strengthens safety on school buses by requiring newly manufactured school buses to be equipped with automatic emergency braking and electronic stability control systems. It also directs the DOT Secretary to review the costs and benefits of requiring lap/shoulder belts in large school buses and to conduct research and testing of fire prevention and mitigation standards for large school buses and consider issuing updated standards.
- Regarding H.R. 3663, the INVEST in America Act promotes safer and more accessible transportation routes across the United States by requiring states with the highest levels of pedestrian and bicyclist fatalities to set aside funds to address these safety needs. It requires the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) to adopt context-sensitive design principles to provide for complete streets in urban areas and ensure the safety of all road users.
Additionally, Congressman Cohen noted the inclusion of the restoration of food and beverage service on Amtrak’s long-distance routes, which he spearheaded as a member of the Railroads, Pipelines and Hazardous Materials Subcommittee.
Congressman Cohen made the following statement:
“I’m proud that House Democrats have introduced a five-year surface transportation reauthorization bill, which will address some of our country's most urgent infrastructure needs. This bill is critically important to Memphis, as it funds highways and railroads that are important for Memphis’s standing as an American distribution center and provides increased funding for buses and bus facilities that will help improve MATA services. I am also pleased that this bill includes several provisions that I have introduced, which will undoubtedly help to improve highway and road safety for all users.”
The INVEST in America Act invests $494 billion over five years in transformative infrastructure in surface transportation and rail transportation. It also invests $411 billion over five years in the Highway Trust Fund, a 46 percent increase. The bill calls for the repair of existing highways before building new capacity, existing bridge rehabilitation; and helps reduce carbon pollution emissions.