tv Freight Movement Hearing CSPAN December 23, 2017 3:17am-4:49am EST
>> next, a senate environment and public works subcommittee hearing on trade movement -- freight movement in and out of the u.s. this included transportation experts discussing the economic impact and what a a senate envit and public works subcommittee hearing on trade movement -- potential exit could mean to the freight industry. this is one hour and a half. >> the meeting will come to order. order. we are honored to have some great witnesses today and i will save the introductions. i know there are a couple introductions that would be made from up here. this morning, i'll go ahead with opening statements and we're honored to have the chairman of the ranking member. then i understand senator
cardin, you have an introduction to make also. we will do that. let's recognize first senator carper because he is going to be coming back and doing his a little bit later. >> very briefly, welcome to the important hearing and i want to thank our chair and ranking member for putting this all together. i have a statement by the act to ask unanimous consent that appear in the record of have a . i have a statement by the act to ask unanimous consent that appear in the record of have a chance to come back and give alive later this morning i will do that. again, it's good to see you all. thank you for joining us. >> thank you. we want to thank all of you for being here today, i would like to thank my friend and ranking member for his staff and the help in getting this hearing together. i've taken count and i think the last was other than you and me that came in to this congress is retiring this year end that leaves you and me. >> i hope that's not a message. but anyway, we did come in and we spent a lot of time working together in a bipartisan way to accomplish things. i look forward to working with
my colleague to benefit our transportation networks in the economy. president trump has shown a 3% growth in the economy with over 2 million jobs in the consumer confidence is skyrocketed. however, the economy will only continue to grow if our infrastructure is maintained, and expanded to meet our future needs. in 2015, over 18 billion tons of freight worth $19 trillion moved over highways, railways, waterway and through the air. these members and numbers are only expected to grow with an estimated 25 billion tons of freight movement by 2045 worth an estimated $37 trillion. yet, when freight is delayed on congested highways, diverted around or awaiting movement in our ports, on our waterways, an estimated $27 billion annually increase
costs. airborne by businesses raising prices on consumer goods. the more delays we see, the further behind we become. according to the world economic forum, the u.s. ranks h in overall info structure quality and the american society of engineers which we have heard several times from score infrastructure as a d+ earlier this year. estimating that we need to spend close to $2 trillion in the next ten years to improve all of our infrastructure and our overall economy. in order to address this need, we ask congress to pass the fast tax and authorized $305 billion over five years. fast act also established a 6.3 in dollar program to invest in the free projects on the national highway freight network. that's the first time that had been done. it has created a $4.5 billion over five-year grant program to improve the safety and movement of freight.
to know the fast act was the largest transportation authorization in the decade, we have more work to be done before we close the gap between us. we look forward to hearing from our witnesses today and enjoy meeting them individually and reminding mr. parker that we and the state of oklahoma, our best-kept secret is that we. [inaudible] senator cardin. >> senator inhofe, thank you for reminding me how long we've been here. i appreciate that very much. but, we've been friends since we both came to the united states congress in 1987 and i do thank him for his dedication, his willingness to try to find ways to move things forward, particularly with infrastructur infrastructure, he has been one of our great leaders. it is a pleasure to work with you on this subcommittee that deals with infrastructure with
members of this committee. to date, the topic is critically important. freight movement, assessing where we are now and where we need to go. this nation was built by the fact that we were able to build up an economy and our infrastructure was critically important for us being able to develop that economic strength that we all are so proud and gives us opportunity too so many people. : :
>> mr. chairman over the next 30 years our transportation system that has powered to enable generations of economic growth could become a drag if we do not pay attention to investing in america's infrastructure. we already know how many hours a week are wasted in transportation from trucks stuck in traffic. trying to get through a metropolitan area and even on the weekends is becoming difficult or in the middle of
the night. there is some construction and took me longer than it should have to get home last night. we need to do a better job to deal with that. trucks lose $28 million in dollars in wasted time in fuel per year. the airports face severe congestion, and the dams along the waterways, the ports dredging and modernization to compete in a regional economy, transit systems is $100 billion of maintenance of backlog and i could attest. the companies depend upon the transportation system and how they feel these effects.
but i do applaud the leadership of this committee to provide funding sources to build upon our success of this committee with the wherewithal to modernize the infrastructure. as a ranking member of the subcommittee mr. thomas is here let me take that opportunity to brag about the port of baltimore. one of only four on the east coast that has the depth and width necessary to take on the new ships from the panama canal. to have a 50-foot shipping channel. we look in the statistics, but
let me point this out, this generates 13615 jobs directly with 127,000 are related to those activities. responsible for $3 billion of individual individual wages and salaries with 310 million of state and local taxes, revenues. none of this can be done without a strong federal partnership. we cannot do it on our own. yesterday we had a long discussion about the jobs report in the united states senate and we all know that investing in infrastructure will not only build the tools
necessary to grow the economy but grow the jobs of the future that we need for the people of this nation. i look forward to hearing from our panel. >> mr. chairman, senator carper i would be happy to differ -- defer to you. >> i appreciate that. at that port is wilmington delaware my staff came so i could drop off a prop number one for importing bananas but also proves one -- prunes left left i will be happy to share them with my colleagues afterwards left left. [laughter] but on a serious note talk
about the job creation with access of capital to foreign markets and infrastructure but all of the above and more. so there is a reluctance to pay for this and a big part of the challenge is to figure out the cost-effective ways that leverage nonfederal monies and private sector monies. that is our challenge. it is important having gone through a tough period of time that when we tackle infrastructure we do at the
right way and we do that together and we will do a much better job than we will amaze our friends. >> before i introduce i would like to say a few words about today's hearing the subcommittee is examining freight movement where we need to go it is a vital part of the economy thank you for holding this important hearing. everyone benefits across the bridges and roads the freight industry allows for american-made products to go from the heartland to the coast and across the world this year to underscore the need to upgrade maintain shipping higher ways it is a bipartisan goal of this committee with the public works committee has held seven
hearings on modernizing infrastructure of both world and urban communities the value of streamlining to cut government red tape to get those building projects started faster. so taxpayers get the most bang for their buck. in january the administration will outline the broad vision for infrastructure with a unique opportunity ahead of us we will grow the economy to ensure the safety of every american we will work to improve america's roads, bridges, water systems dams and ports i would like to introduce chris who has served as president and ceo of the american trucking association since july 2016 in a long time
friend with extensive connections i am pleased he has offered his expertise. attending college at the university of wyoming with his matcher -- bachelors and masters degree. beginning his career with the senate in 1993 working as a professional staff member for wyoming staff member and then continue to go under senator enzi and unanimously confirmed by the senate with the united states department of labor. serving as deputy representative with the coalition provisional authority in iraq awarded u.s. department of defense joint civilian service medal and then was the honeywell international. in his current role he leads the efforts to advocate and
educate on behalf of the trucking industry knowing how vital great transportation is to the economy and states like wyoming depend on the industry upwards of 7 million people responsible moving for $10 billion month -- million pounds of freight annually. >> we look forward to hearing your testimony. >> i am very happy to be named the deputy assistant director from the for administration december of 2016 but he has been with the port now 16 years and has a distinguished record to understand all operations under his current responsibility to include maintenance claim and terminal operations and the intermodal
religious tics so we are pleased with the expertise from maryland and better understand the challenges that we have to move the commerce and freight through the ports to receive the bachelor of science degree in the business administration. >> and those other two witnesses that have not been introduced and the chief executive officer and the regional council of government.
and we will start with you and work across. >> chairman and ranking member and chairman thank you for the introduction and members of the subcommittee i appreciate the opportunity to testify on this critical subject. we are grateful to recognize freight in the process transportation bill. as proven necessary to move 5 billion additional times over the next decade that is a 40% increase. this year alone, moving 71% of the nations freight tonnage, worth more than $10 trillion. the international highway network is rapidly deteriorating. costing the average motorist nearly $1500 per year per year higher maintenance and congestion. exceed $3 billion in 2015 truck drivers sat in traffic
nearly $1 billion lung -- hours with 162,000 drivers 62000 drivers sitting idle for an entire year. 50% of highway fatalities the condition of the roadway is a contributing factor. the highway trust fund will run short to maintain current spending levels by fy 2021 creating a huge funding gap to four states to cancel or delay critical projects. as the investment gap so also will the deficient bridges and the fatalities attributable to inadequate roadways. to build america fund to be supported with a new index $.20 per per gallon feed built into the price of fuel collected at the terminal rack
to generate $340 billion of revenue so this proposal would stabilize the trust fund and the backlog but we recognize over time the fuel tax of diminishing revenue source so we encourage the subcommittee to implement a ten year plan to provide long-term stability for the federal aid program with a new more sustainable user fees. recognizing trucks are but one part of the supply chain to rely on air and water and rail partners to keep it moving smoothly and efficiently and we are grateful for the resources provided specifically for freight projects and legislation. and to maintain the share currently dedicated to highway projects particularly the
roads deserve dedicated funding created greater connectivity and more efficient and safer movement of the nations freight and finally to have the unequivocal support for strong federal role in funding to oversee highway improvements. states are not waiting on congress to act. adopting funding schemes to pay half of the tab of the highway trust fund we consider so schemes but a fleecing of industry. and with existing federal standards such as the rest breaks commonly referred to as the burden some barriers that are elevating safety risk to
the motoring public while lining the public operators and trial lawyers. that would have been spent on driver pay and training to purchase safer more environmentally friendly equipment. it has allowed states to have added compliance cost to grow and support the nation's economy making state preemption a top priority of trucking companies. this is not about states rights in support of devolving responsibility fails to acknowledge the constitutional obligation to support interstate commerce and those benefits that extend beyond jurisdictional boundaries. the gps heat maps tracks the movement of freight. these illustrations underscore how it isn't a local state or
regional problem as much as rhetoric tries to suggest but a federal issue with serious economic and security implications i applied this committee for its razor focus a committed partner to help each of you and your senate colleagues produce the infrastructure bill in 2018 that republicans and democrats and the american people can be proud of. thank you for the opportunity to testify. >> chairman and ranking member thank you for allowing me to share my views. with the council of governments with the coalition of the gateway.
and with that infrastructure as a metropolitan organization for the region has final authority overall federal spending on surface transportation. with the nationally significant bridge that is the linchpin on the i 75 trade core door that connects michigan to miami and carries over $1 billion of goods every day. but but it is suffering due to structural deficiencies and overcrowding. around $750 million annually with wasted time and fuel. the common commerce clause with those interstate commerce 77% of all freight crosses straight state lines but they
cannot shoulder investment to improve that. it is a down payment but more is needed to keep pace that as a percentage of gdp spending on what it does on infrastructure that formula dollars to have complex trade projects is limited recognizing this a much-needed grant program to target large fray and highway projects and competitive programs encourage and incentivize not to get
involved with $800 million in fy in fy 16 and leverage $3.6 billion of total investment. just because a project is more affordable to the federal government it doesn't mean it is the most valuable investment for a country's economy. they should first be evaluated on the ability to meet congressionally program goals to sponsor strategic investment we make recommendations number one a national vision that investment strategy should shape and guide the infrastructure system with coordination among states and regions and focusing on the intermodal freight should be established with policy with a significant project to provide
a dedicated and sustainable funding source to have a much larger return on investment then other transportation spending those that are vastly oversubscribed in the first round seeing $13 request for every one dollar available a minimum annual direct investment 2 million above levels is necessary. congress should eliminate spending it doesn't only move on highways that public benefit is derived in public investment should be made. number three successful applications meet merit-based criteria to prioritize with a
demonstrable contribution to the initial national trade efficiency. number four seeing a fast acting implementation to be aligned with congressional intent to be sufficient decision-making transparency. despite congresses development strong enough merit-based criteria, gao was unable to determine the rationale for selecting the first round of 18 successful projects. lastly a partnership with the private sector to leverage private participation with the largest possible funding options. the advisory council of system users could assist dot partnerships with the private sector. i think the committee for their time and attention to this critically important topic. >> thank you.
and also things for being specific as you specified five things in this committee will have to make some decisions. >> thank you for the opportunity to testify on freight and movement. i know other witnesses well focus on other areas so instead i will focus on the inland waterways transportation system and potential reforms because that is critically important. currently serve as chair operating 26 total votes 340 barges also the director of the waterway council.
the transportation system is made up of 12000 miles of the inland waterways with the intracoastal waterways nearly 11000 miles to pay the fuel tax with the waterway trust fund. to be successfully advocate by raising taxes by 45% to the current level of 29 cents per gallon. this tax currently pays half of the cost of new construction of major rehabilitation of inland waterways like the locks and dams but also channel deepening. after only having one order enacted it is encouraging to see this committee put it back on a two-year cycle with 2014 and 2016.
with those policy changes contained with the locks and dams. go from 50% waterway trust fund to 15% in the general fund. leading to excess -- significant timeline. and at the board meeting a few weeks ago the olmsted project will be operational next year or as early as june with full completion that was expected in 2022. four years ahead of the estimated completion date. now it is scheduled to be $330 million below the estimated cost.
and the kentucky locks it comes at a critical time starting early september 2017 lots of damage that they would be replacing repeated failures causing multiple closures and at one point the recent emergencies billed in the 20s are in critical need of modernization. currently there is a portfolio of projects with the total cost estimated at $8.8 billion. at this rate they will not even begin their construction we hope they will continue the
same type of change and congress change the cost share policy with the depth of 40 or 50 feet with 50% government at 25% nonfederal budget 75% federal government. government. by doing the same to the trust fund the committee would allow for the inland navigation program at or above the 400 million-dollar level. thanks for print dissipating in the roundtable discussion. >> into focus on national freight movement one of the busiest and most diverse forts in the united states with six
public marine terminals and private terminals located in our harbor. ranking first handling more trucks and construction equipment than all other major u.s. ports and in total with a total dollar value and 14 for the amount of tonnage. for the last seven years ranked among the most productive port in the nation the fourth fastest growing port in north america 2016. overall we saw 31.8 tons of international cargo cross valued at $49.9 billion $.9 billion. we expect to surpass both numbers this year. it can accommodate the largest container ships in the world. with the necessary infrastructure with the newly expanded panama city now.
it is a leading economic engine and we feel strongly if freight is moving efficiently than the economy -- economy moves efficiently as well. 13000 direct jobs with 127,000 jobs in maryland yes we have hurdles we need to clear. for double stacked rails is to international or domestic containers on one another on a rail car for transportation in or out of a port that doubles capacity to have efficiencies with the supply chain. and to have that ability so to have a 122-year-old freight tunnel not under the current
figuration. those to bring of less than 500 million-dollar project and then to agree to share 290 million of the 445 million-dollar cost. we submit this as for federal funding we were unsuccessful but we still thought we had a strong application and we are optimistic we will be successful in round two. the deadline was november 2, 2017 only a few short days before we were informed they were pulling support for the project without csx the owner cannot move forward without the grant -- application to
have the improved intermodal currently viewed by industries in their own words it would increase clearance to remove trucks from highways to to be more efficient of a logistics network with more intermodal movements to support additional jobs. also be sure waterways can handle larger ships. baltimore depends on adequate authority and the u.s. army of engineers to do dredging. that is the maritime equivalent to highway maintenance. also get rid of that responsible even using the dredge sediment for ecosystem restoration the port of baltimore is using in the chesapeake project that is
restoring natural habitat in the chesapeake bay. it is waiting free construction design funding the port of baltimore urges you to support like this and those that face that d authorization in calendar year 2021 it is critical to provide approximately 40 years of settlement capacity i ask this committee to support this in the next water resources development act to continue this project in conclusion playing a vital role to provide performance. and then to be adequately funded and in 2015 the last time cvc was funded only two out of ten staffers were
assigned to the ports. they need this additional support to keep cargo moving without it the flow cannot perform at peak levels. thanks for allowing me to speak before the committee. >> to be on this committee. and with those authorization bills in one of the big problems used to be to much money with no trust fund is not a problem anymore so to call your attention in my opening statement we didn't have a great provision so is there anything that you did not say in your opening statement concerning the
progress of what you could attribute to those provisions in the fast act? >> and to look at the problem as it is growing alongside with the economy exceed 3 billion the industry loses each year. we know where these are we report every year it is done in concert with the department of transportation so take that authorization bill puts a good focus on freight with the strategic plan if they were a little delinquent i think it
needs to do more to build a prayer to rosacea and and have a plan to have an impact in the bottle neck. but they were quite significant to put the focus on where the problem is. and then to get the maximum amount. >> and the amount of applications made versus the awards? >> $13 of request for every one dollar available. >> ice. do you agree with those comments made that or is it not adequate?
>> but for the first time you recognize freight and it is a primary driver of transportation spending. we believe freight is the future as part of a global economy for the first time our competitors are from all over the world. and the simple fact is that by concentrating you elevate projects with a $2.6 billion project moving freight dramatically. it is like double stacking as well. bringing freight to the forefront it makes it easier to carry it to the public that this type of spending must be done. it is invaluable. >> i was part of the committee
and then to focus on this now is in the white house. and with that legislation coming forward. our best-kept secret is the navigation but here is the problem. and then to come along later but with the lifespan of the locks and dams that we are having serious problems right now particularly of deterioration taking place to
put in the provision that doesn't happen very often. so to come along ways but to be far inland like oklahoma, the lifespan is past us. and with that waterways trust fund and that was the project delivery. >> but when you made the policy change with olmstead. and with adequate funding and with the early under budget we
can take the same policies if we can make this change to reinvest in the aging locks and dams throughout the system. and that is the important aspect to keep this up to speed and up to date. >> all four of the witnesses and to continue to strengthen the authorization bills. on those revenues of infrastructure and to create jobs and the you get the necessary resources with the waterways.
authorization which was unique for its time because it allowed for the availability of the dredge material, not always without controversy but this was supported because it was part of environmental restoration. we could keep the shipping lanes dredged at the necessary level but put it to use to reclaim islands that used to exist in the chesapeake bay to be returned for the national importance to have the landmass to protect against erosion and also using habitat for different species. and to be very efficient and we recognize to be at capacity
and we recognize that many years ago with the army corps. recommending the construction in midday but that represented pardo 20 years before that would be ready so you do need leadtime for a lot of these projects and then to make sure congress not only authorizes but how important is it to stay on track? >> turn on your microphone.
>> every one has benefits to the national economy with substantial job losses and economic impact. with that dredging of the 50-foot channel to be put online and we expect within two or three years of the most recent dredging event it would go down at a 45-foot death with losses of 12780 direct jobs and 800 million personal income in hundred 56 million of business revenues including the taxes that are at risk if we cannot maintain the 50-foot channel. >> chairman know that the midday bipartisan delegation is a priority to make sure we stay on track also talk about
the double stacking it is somewhat unique one of the few double stacked trains through baltimore if you are ready for the grant request but you had to pull that. so i take it you strongly support us moving forward getting csx to move forward? >> we are well positioned due to public-private partnership. to give the ability to expand the terminal we are big ship ready with a strong consumer market. and productive labor. and to have that ability
through the port of baltimore and we estimate coming online that would increase volume roughly 100,000 containers annually 6000 construction jobs and another 7200 linked to the howard street activity if completed. >> i asking animus consent the letter from the port of los angeles read part of the record. >> thanks to convening this meaning -- this meeting but first mr. spear you indicate in your testimony doubts about the in fraud program or consequences of the role. 25% set-aside and what should you be concerned about with several projects and as they
reflect to preserve the 1956 federal aid highway program distributing down to the state and localities with the freight program priorities. they are also receiving funding so everybody is competing for the same type of funds but increasing funding on top of what has already been done is where we need to see more results to occur on the local level. it is a funding issue but putting more money into the programs will see results. >> what we have discovered is the off system roads and
bridges to getting the grain to market so to rebuild or restructure infrastructure that lends itself to trucking across the country and it has to begin someplace it is pretty rural in the case of our state. thank you for that reminder about the broader question is using this as an opportunity to the economic well-being of our country with all transportation modes that is nafta the value to export commodities and manufactured goods to the north and to the south of how we earn a living in kansas i would highlight
agriculture in particular will always be just fine because canada and mexico will always want our commodities i wish that was true i hope it is true nobody can compete but to see the cost of freight and the differential to get grain to mexico compared to argentina to use waterways to get grain to new mexico with the disadvantage the competition is great with grain coming from someplace else to be shipped as our neighbor to the south if nafta went away what about the
consequences for the use of trucks or our waterways and the opportunity to highlight the importance of investment to compete in a global economy that could be anyone but if you could highlight for me the value of trade with mexico to be competitive globally to compete with infrastructure. >> it is absolutely essential to walk away from obligations is not a perfect agreement but it is trying to improve that in the manner reflective of the economy but trucks move 70x% and 81% of the border
crossings are moved by truck 71% with canada. to walk away from that talk about the recession it isn't the recession but it is catastrophic to our economy and our partnerships to the north and south canada would jeopardize national security with the ability to work with other countries on different levels. beyond the national security benefits we make the freight move through connected means and to walk away from those opportunities would have a dramatic effect on every state including kansas. >> with or without nafta american agriculture is
intense competition and our key with the reports so the things that we occurred do to make them competitive is the policy change of the fund obligations that is a huge state lung -- a huge step to keep american agriculture and the navigation sustainability program as it is frequently referred to that is a key component going forward hoping congress will direct some steps to changing those locks and help agriculture moving
forward. >> we don't have navigable waters in kansas but i would say we care greatly about those waterways to the locks and dams that is the connection to the rest of the world. >> senator? >> chairman and panel i appreciate when we have these infrastructure hearings when the bipartisanship is so apparent there has a physician to have gas and diesel to pay for additional highway road and related infrastructure. correct?
>> correct. >> does your organization take the same position? >> we do and we support increasing the gas tax. >> one of the reasons is from an article talking about the gas tax hike to pay for the infrastructure plan it works mr. spear is quoted to say taxpayers already paid dearly on the inaction to fix the highway. can you explain? be make your state is a good example. >> one of the highest cost aids in terms of car damage it doesn't matter how big it is everybody leads to the previous question. >> you are referring to the hundreds of dollars when those were documented.
$1500 per dollars per motorist spending on maintenance and congestion fees like rhode island wouldn't have to pay for the existing roads and bridges that we already paid for through taxation so now it is double-dip and they are not adequately funding the programs it has created and so in contrast the $340 billion that was $100 per motorist per year for all roads and bridges in the country. >> to make an investment in the quality of roads to say far more and saving on the wear and tear and damage.
>> that $100 extra gives you $340 billion of new revenue for roads and bridges. go out one day on one way one road they hit you at $44 just to go a few miles. you almost paid half of what you paid for one year through the taxation on the 20 sent for all roads and bridges. >> and it goes out by highway but with sandy we saw 95 closed because it was flooded with the amtrak rail system and in particular with connecticut with high risk
from sea level rise and storm surge. how alert do we need to be with coastal infrastructure? >> it is certainly a concern you have to maintain when the economy demands it. and those risks to prepare for the new risk. >> and add infrastructure. >> no way to look at that fact that we should not be prepared. >> so let me turn to mr. thomas first of all let me thank you for the port of
baltimore support for the marine planning efforts and with the exhibit that is paralyzing the existence of the base. it is hard to go back to raise that infrastructure the schools and the houses with the economic ecosystem so what is the lesson for the commercial ports like yours? >> so with that recognition to attend the meeting and the om
port administration has a resiliency program for climate change and to build now and our ad plus ten to raise 2 feet above the current elevation and to take into consideration it is a real thing. the newest project is revis mann -- rehabilitation all that we will raise at 10 feet. those are the things we are struggling with now. with the storm water vault. >> out of courtesy i should
cut you off there. to fill out your answer further now we are one minute over with other colleagues waiting. but i appreciate it. thank you. >> but tim parker who is testifying to be part of the record. i believe the infrastructure or the port the river system, everything that goes with it, the highways are at a critical time to do something here in congress.
what is your observation? you've been the chairman of the port authority and you and your family have been in the business of march time to speak for the water council. how important is the modernization to the southeast and the state of alabama? >> as you could imagine only for the balancing trade deficit but for keeping the industrial plants competitive and champion of the product we know as all ports do it means ocean freight rates for the products moving in and out so i applaud you for what you've done and hopefully we keep pushing that protection. >> on behalf of the association
coming your remarks have been spot on but whether it's rhode island, alabama, new york, california we are facing the same challenges. >> absolutely, senator. mobile, baltimore, the new jersey port authority were talking about how they were deep in the modernizing technology and made the port very efficient but if you can't move the box on the trucks it doesn't matter how much you invest so that intermodal conductivity is pivotal to illustrate that it doesn't stop right there. they go beyond the port inn in many states and the economy reflects that so the earlier point made it is absolutely paramount to invest. >> the health of the economy is based on the marketplace and
transportation is so essential to moving the services. thank all of you and i think we got something out of this but hoping as a junior member of the committee i came on the committee because i believe we are going to do in infrastructure built and i want to work with the chairmen and ranking ochairman andthe rankin. we've got to do that and we've got to do that soon. >> thank you, senator shelby i want to thank the witnesses for participating in this conversation. few states play a greater role in the national freight system in the state of illinois. it is the epicenter of the
network and waterway system we must consider the system as a competitive advantage and unfortunately this is rapidly eroding. do you agree with the american society in the united states but it's somewhere in the ballpark of $2 trillion of infrastructure investment gap over the next ten years? >> not only do i agree with it but i hope people shout it fromm the rooftops over and over aga again. it is driving force, the need is so great we can't look the other way its input into the country that we do this not just economically solving the problem but the idea that congress can come together and address such an important issue that has such an impact on jobs is something
system requires somewhere around $110 billion to rebuild the levees and dams? >> we generate about $110,150,000,000 per year in which is matched right now, so we need to continue that. if we do the policy change we talked about, we can get back to the $400 million per year program that will go a long way to getting them modernized and up to date to make sure we keep the list industry in illinois competitive in the market. >> i agree and in fact speaking to my colleague the last several years in illinois, they bought corn and soybeans from brazil because they can get them into the united states faster than we can move them down the mississippi and we still have the silos that are filled with
grains. my concern is the president secured 1.5 trillion tax cuts geared towards large corporations and the ultra- wealthy. this is a disturbing trend. your testimony suggests that the budget a roadmap of the policy priority is as it relates to infrastructure investment. >> it is certainly inconsistent with what we have been advocating. we are willing to pay more. we are already paying half in the trucking industry and half the vehicles on the road. when you are moving 70% of the domestic breeds in the country, you invest in your backyard that
is our plan. these are all measurable returns for raising the tax. it hasn't been indexed or we wouldn't be having this discussion right now. the lack of funding coming from the localities to connect the mode and address the economic demand of the states are picking up the slack and doing a lot of things that are destructive and they impede our ability to grow and increase intrastate commerce and serve consumers the way that we would expect. >> the revenue could pay for the robust infrastructure investments and unfortunately.
it's a loophole that allows the hedge fund to pay more capital gains that would generate enough revenue to rehab after he walked on the water system twice adding insult to injury they will rely on the budget cuts to pay for the infrastructure proposal. they did nothing to plant the infrastructure investment and budget and a pickup in spending by almost $200 billion a trickle-down tax is nothing to build up infrastructure and now the president plans to pay for the proposal on the back of the families while preserving handouts for wall street weenies get serious about how we are going to invest in infrastructure because they are
competing against south korea and japan and china making these investments and we are not. but we should be dominating the world and so with that, i won't yield back, mr. chairman. >> speaking of that, senator inhofe mentioned the importance of the system and the wear and tear and he's been a tremendous champion and we appreciate the state of arkansas appreciates your leadership in the area. sometimes i don't think we are very smart in the way that we do things. arkansas now has a 9-foot channel and we would like to go to 12 feet with a relatively inexpensive expenditure certainly that would make less openings at less wear and tear on the locks and dams to carry
about 40% more product on the same barge. can you talk about the importance of that and trying to get a situation where we can take the dollars that we have and spend them most efficiently? the >> you're absolutely right it is. that will help the whole system make american agriculture or industrial plant, steel mills more competitive in the markets they have to serve. we appreciate what the leadership said on the last word of the bill and if we can enact policy changes i'm confident they can manage the products and effectively move the country
forward. >> i was going to talk about the importance of the intermodal system and the good news is you heard from every member on the panel regarding that. democrats, republicans are united in getting the system to work together and it's also very important to our economy. i understand there are short parking spaces. can you talk about that and if there is anything that we can help you with in that regard, and what is the solution? >> the last five to seven years we've done a lot to capture the problem and it is in the lack of investment in infrastructure. what we are maintaining we are not adding. we are also having a vote of regulatory requirements one of
them came into effect in 2013 so now you have drivers for good reasons so they are not fatigued pulling over and undesignated places putting themselves and equipment in jeopardy that elevating risk. the infrastructure simply does not accommodate the truck parking situation that we are requiring them to be wrested so it is in direc indirect but it n impact on the movement of freight because we are not investing to expand infrastructure and this is what you get. you mentioned the increase in the fuel taxes. have you got any other ideas besides that which we could delve into? >> and the testimony i go into the details. the states already collect fees for there is a burden of 29 billion with extra money in addition to the 340 billion of
new money over the first ten years that it receives and it's a fuel tax rack. we look for other ways to work with congress and other modes to raise revenue particularly for the conductivity. we did some criteria in the testimony to be consistent with whatever policy makes certain that it is inexpensive to pay and collect and has a low evasion rate and that it be tied to the highway use and diverted to the other causes especially if we are paying into it that is a sensitive point in the industry and creating impediments to the intrastate commerce, so we apply them to any proposal we would entertain anything congress puts o put one table. meeting those criteria we would shape our support around that. we recognize fuel tax is antiquated and probably beyond ten years it's not going to
capture the environment we are in, so we would challenge congress to look beyond the ten year bill and start talking about now what we are goin but o to collect the fees to fund future infrastructure, a lot more hybrids and alternative fueled vehicles on the road in the next ten, 20, 30 years and the way we raise revenue is currently not capture that audience. it's going to make the problem worse, so we would work with you to identify the new means to raise revenue that our build america fund is the centerpiece and the wisest most efficient cost effective lower than 2% administrative costs to put money into the roads and bridges immediately so that's what we would advocate. >> thank you very quickly mr. parker, without the big water resources bill from 2007 to 2014, can you talk about the importance of getting the water bill done on a two-year cycle so
we do not get in that situation again? >> is important we are not constantly playing catch-up and we stay ahead of the curve in the proper planning and get the chief reports done so i think the two-year cycle is critical in the process so we can look ahead in the data changes and just not play them behind the curve so to speak. >> thank you mr. chairman. >> i would like to ask some questions related to the important safety issue that i've been working on in the truck crashes and under ride crashes when a car slides under the body of a truck during an accident which accidents happen. they are not able to protect passengers because most of the car slides under the trailer and truck crashes straight into the passengers. passengers and thei in the car n suffer severe neck and head
injuries including decapitation on impact of the truck. these accidents are fatal even at low speeds. this past summer for individuals were killed when their car slipped underneath a tanker that had swerved to avoid a deer in new york state. two cars crashed into the truck and slid underneath i underneatr people were pronounced dead at the scene. i introduced a bill to require trailers to be fitted with under ride cards so a car can no longer slide under a truck during an accident. are you aware of the national transportation safety board recommended they be equipped with side cards and improved rear guards in 2014? >> yes ma'am. >> are you aware that the institute for highway and safety department of transportation to require stronger rear guards on trucks and that comply with the current federal regulations often failed and resulted in serious injury or death? >> im, senator.
>> are you aware that the institute performed a successful under ride guard at 40 miles per hour? >> im, senator serious >> with providing a week extension for providing the guards make it easier for the industry to add a safety measure? >> most definitely. >> do you think this is a safety measure we should push forward? >> i wouldn't dismiss it. and i applaud you. one fatality is too many. 40,000 a year is just inexcusable. we need to be doing more. one area that i would ask that you press on the dot is to speed up their analyst us on this and report back on the added weight of the under ride guard to be sure that it does not compromise the integrity of the trailer itself. we are talking 80,000 pounds and you are addinyou're adding moret underneath it. you don't want to try to solve a safety problem by creating another one, so i would very much like to have that report,
that data back that validates the added weight of the under guard wouldn't compromise the integrity of the trailer itself. >> i think the wait isn't that much from its about 800-pound panels were relative to the overall weight isn't a lot and from what i understand the only opposition was because it just means they carry less great so you're putting money in front of safety. >> it would also add to the cost of the requirement. if you're saying that we have to reduce freight to pay for the added weight of the under guard, that is going to be a massive figure, we're talking millions of trailers, so that is a big number. i think the exemption is well taken. >> if the cost is the only issue those are the kind of things congress can address. >> the added weight making certain it doesn't compromise the integrity of the trailer if it's not a problem then why not report it.
>> a separate topic, with regard to highway infrastructure, leasing to private entities in your opinion who would benefit from selling these to private entities? >> hard to say, certainly not my industry and not the american people. we are 7.4 million strong. one in 16 jobs in the u.s. and we are the top job in 29 states paying half into the trust fund and moving 70% of the freight. if we do the 20 cents on the gallon that is 340 billion of extra money that you can spend on the great framework that you put together. we are paying half the tab and we are willing to pay more. i think that is the best means of giving it. we believe that on the existing roads and bridges these schemes
or extortion. when we are happy to pay more and offering it up here i would recommend you take that, it is a good deal. >> thank you mr. chairman. >> thank you. senator do you have any further comments to make? >> i want to thank the panel. it's been an extremely important hearing and want to underscore a point that shall be made and the witnesses that we identify in a bipartisan way to get the revenues we need in a package that will allow us to move forward with infrastructure in this country coming and we've got to do that in the tradition of this committee. >> and we should get the panel our veterans that is going to happen. i remember during the last year or the year before last when we would have our meetings and i would report on what the committee is doing and we are going to be the committee that
[inaudible conversations] >> monday, christmas day on the p.m.n network, at 10:00 eastern, queen elizabeth delivers her annual christmas matches -- christmas message. character,d of moral what kind of human values are we willing to promote? are we going to forget the very ugly realities in gaza and west bank? >> if you look to the u.n. today, there is one country in the world that is the focus of 90% of you and resolutions and that is israel. >> on book tv on c-span2, world
war ii veteran recalls his bombing missions over japan with his book, " the last fighter pilot. " >> the squadron took off. we led them to a front. 27 fighter planes went down. 25 guys were killed. it is hard for me to tell you the truth how i felt. we were there to protect our freedom. it was after the war that i suffered for 30 years. >> on american history tv. hamilton playwright and dr. excepts theiranda 2017 freedom award. are a theater can
you make different friends from different social groups. to createto work hard something greater than the sum of your parts. you learn to trust your passion. >> watch monday, christmas day, on the c-span network. this week marks the 29th anniversary of the pan am flight bombing was marked by a 103 remembrance ceremony at arlington national ceremony, with remarks by attorney general jeff sessions and family members of the victims. [bagpipes playing]