Dennis Slater, president of the Association of Equipment (AEM), issued the following statement following House passage of the STRR
Act, a long-term highway bill, on Thursday:
Equipment manufacturers applaud the House for passing The STRR Act, a long-term highway bill that will spur investments to rebuild America’s crumbling infrastructure. This legislation is a worthwhile effort by House leaders to fulfill their pledge to pass a long-term highway bill this fall.
Chairman Shuster and Ranking Member DeFazio deserve particular credit for shepherding the STRR Act through the House after months of behind-the-scenes efforts to build support for this important legislation. It’s also a testament to Speaker Ryan that the first major victory of his speakership is a bill that emerged through regular order that will also end a pattern of funding the Highway Trust Fund from deadline to deadline. The many other lawmakers who fought this year to educate colleagues on the harm of stopgap measures and who put forth innovative plans to end the trust fund’s chronic shortfall were similarly instrumental in today’s victory.
The STRR Act is doubly important because, like the DRIVE Act in the Senate, it would also provide long-term reauthorization for the Export-Import Bank of the United States. The Ex-Im Bank is a vital tool to help equipment manufacturers stay globally competitive and sell more of their products abroad.
Congress is now on the cusp of a major victory for American manufacturing. AEM will work tirelessly in the coming weeks to urge House and Senate leaders to expeditiously reconcile the differences between their two bills.