January 20, 2015
RE: Please support all efforts to increase local transportation aid
Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto advocates a 100% increase in the Local Aid component of the Transportation Trust Fund in an article that will appear in the February edition of our League magazine, New Jersey Municipalities. That would mean an annual distribution of $380 million to address local and county infrastructure needs. But as he indicates in that piece (available for your early review at http://www.njslom.org/TTF/Prieto.pdf), local leaders need to get actively involved in the fight.
Speaker Prieto rightly states, “… the future of our state’s economy rests on our ability to inform the public about the need for TTF revenue and the consequences of not acting. These costs go beyond dilapidated roads to include a continued reliance on over-borrowing and the higher lending costs that go with it. Continued underfunding will also lead to higher repair costs for roads that are increasingly unsafe. There needs to be a campaign to bring weary taxpayers around to the truth that paying a little more now will save a whole lot later. Communicating this will require the cooperation of local leaders, such as yourself.”
On December 11, we joined Senate President Steve Sweeney in Trenton to thank him for his leadership and to lend our support to his efforts to increase Local Aid, on our behalf. (Visit http://www.njslom.org/letters/2014-1211-Transportation-Aid.html for more information on that.) We now thank Speaker Prieto for his support.
But words of thanks won’t win the day. Please speak out in favor of the efforts of Speaker Prieto, Senate President Sweeney and other State level leaders. No one knows better than you that investments in local roads and bridges must be made. Failure to do so can compromise the safety of the public, the economic vitality of our communities and the security of our neighborhoods. The value of such investments will far exceed the costs that motorists might need to bear, in order to replenish the Transportation Trust Fund and reinvigorate our State’s economy.
Very truly yours,
Timothy C. McDonough
Mayor, Hope Township
Chairman, NJLM Transportation
Trust Fund Task Force
|Robert D. Jackson
Mayor, Montclair Township
|William G. Dressel, Jr.