Chairman Bill Shuster, Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure
Subcommittee on Economic Development, Public Buildings, and Emergency Management Hearing on
“Building a 21st Century Infrastructure for America: Economic Development Stakeholders’ Perspectives”
Wednesday, September 13, 2017
(Remarks as Prepared)
Thank you Chairman Barletta for holding this important hearing as we explore what the Nation needs to build a 21st century infrastructure.
Before we begin, I want to offer our condolences to those who have lost loved ones in Hurricanes Harvey and Irma.
I also want to recognize the professionals at FEMA who are working night and day to manage the disaster response to Hurricanes Harvey and Irma.
When these kinds of tragedies strike – as we learned with Katrina, Rita, and Sandy for example – we need to be able to effectively help the people and communities impacted.
And from a policy perspective, we can never stop exploring ways to improve how we invest in disaster preparedness, response, and recovery – and how these programs and capabilities can be improved.
I expect our witnesses today can address these critical issues.
But, investment in infrastructure goes beyond disasters – on the Economic Development side, we have communities all across this nation that struggle – coal communities, small Appalachian towns, communities suddenly hit not only by disasters but by closing businesses.
For many of these communities, agencies like the EDA and ARC provide the technical expertise and seed money they need to spur economic growth and create or save jobs.
I look forward to hearing from our witnesses today.
And again, I want everyone affected by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma to know our hearts and prayers are with you, and we stand ready to help rebuild and recover.