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Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users - 1

Location: Washington, DC

TRANSPORTATION EQUITY ACT: A LEGACY FOR USERS -- (House of Representatives - March 10, 2005)


Mr. ANDREWS. Mr. Speaker, I would like to take this opportunity to express my support for the rule, H. Res. 144, to the TEA-LU, H.R. 3, bill, which makes in order the Pascrell/Menendez/LoBiondo Pay-to-Play amendment. The consideration of this amendment is crucial to restoring the integrity of New Jersey's government and to protecting federal funds allocated to the State.

New Jersey government and politics are long overdue for a cleansing. For too long, New Jersey taxpayers have paid a corruption tax-the cost of decisions made to benefit campaign donors rather than taxpayers. At the present time, the New Jersey legislature is attempting to restore its integrity by barring companies, who have made political contributions to a state government or political party official, from receiving state contracts worth more than $17,500. This is a critical component of the State's reform package and must be enacted and maintained for genuine change to occur in New Jersey.

Standing in the way of New Jersey's cleansing is the US Department of Transportation, USDOT, who has cited concerns that our State's pay-to-play reform would illegally stifle competition for government contracts. New Jersey has challenged the USDOT's decision in the court. Currently, the case is pending.

To weed out the corruption that has plagued our State and resulted in our citizens mistrust of their government, the Pascrell/Menendez/LoBiondo amendment is essential. Consideration and subsequently the passage of this amendment are imperative for New Jersey to attain real ethical reform.

Again, I commend the Rules Committee for declaring the Pascrell/Menendez/LoBiondo Pay-to-Play amendment in order today and urge its adoption.


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