The Buffalo Niagara region is expected to have annual job growth of nearly 5,200 jobs through 2022. These jobs will be located throughout Erie and Niagara counties across all skill levels and industries. Ensuring a workforce can access these jobs is critical to sustain this growth. These workers will need a variety of transportation options as some will not have the resources for, or access to, a car or may choose not to own one.
For years, we have written about the disinvestment that our region has had in its transportation network. Unmaintained roadways, bridges in disrepair and a limited public transit system, hindered by a lack of operating and capital improvement funds. These conditions have been a challenge to our economy, our workforce and our quality of life.
The goal of protecting the Great Lakes and spurring economic development in the communities that surround them took a big step forward with the new federal spending bill. The measure addresses several key advocacy priorities of the Great Lakes Metro Chambers Coalition. The Buffalo Niagara Partnership is a founding member of the GLMCC and I recently traveled to Washington, DC with the group to push for action on many of these issues.
The Buffalo Niagara Partnership recently unveiled its 2018 Advocacy Agenda to a capacity crowd of members and elected officials in downtown Buffalo.
A safe and efficient transportation is vital to the success of an economy and that includes Buffalo Niagara. Therefore, transportation and infrastructure plays a key role in the Buffalo Niagara Partnership’s 2017 Advocacy Agenda. Listing out five specific priorities under this heading, we are stressing that all levels of government should make infrastructure funding and transportation initiatives a priority in order to continue the safe and efficient movement of goods, services, and people throughout the region.
President Donald J. Trump enters office with a series of sweeping proposals. But few could have more impact across the Midwest than his plans for a massive transportation infrastructure bill.
The 2017 Advocacy Agenda unveiling event was featured in a Buffalo News article Friday morning. The article highlighted a regional priority of connecting the community and growing through improved transportation initiatives.
Our regional transportation network is a vital piece of the Buffalo Niagara economy. We rely on roads and bridges to move people and goods around the region and to connect us with the rest of the country – and world. With our region’s position on an international border and the prominence of the local logistics industry; the transportation network plays a critical role in the Buffalo Niagara region. As such, the Partnership has taken a strong position role in advocating for our region’s fair allocation of transportation funds from the state and federal governments, as well as supporting projects that strengthen our infrastructure.
After years of advocating for a long-term federal transportation bill that would fund projects around the country, the Buffalo Niagara Partnership can cross another item off our advocacy agenda; the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act was signed into law by President Obama earlier this month. The first long-term transportation bill passed by Congress in 10 years, the FAST Act allocates $305 billion over five years for surface transportation re-authorization.