Executive, Not Earmarks, Should Guide Infrastructure

Governors Rendell and Schwarzenegger are imploring President Obama to take the lead on national infrastructure policy, rather than allowing earmarks to guide projects.

"At a meeting with the president last month, the two governors and New York Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg discussed the memo they had sent to the White House, a draft of which reads: 'It is very important that the administration be proactive rather than left reacting to congressional proposals.'"

"In the coming months, Congress will consider a bill to set aside as much as $450 billion for highway and other infrastructure projects over a span of six years. House aides said members of Congress intended to insert special projects, or earmarks, into the bill, despite warnings from Obama that he wanted to rein in such spending."

"As yet, the Senate has not decided how it will handle earmarks in the bill, said an aide to Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), chairwoman of the Environment and Public Works Committee."

"Rendell cautioned in an interview that if the bill was larded with earmarks, it could jeopardize the political consensus needed to modernize the nation's network of roads."

Full Story: Obama is urged to take the wheel on infrastructure

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