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Hearing of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee: Investing in Infrastructure: the Road to Recovery


Location: Washington, DC

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REP. LEONARD BOSWELL (D-IA): Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I'll be very short.

I would associate myself with what you said earlier and other members of here with us. Something that you and I have discussed at some length over the last several months is a stimulus. Where better than the roads and infrastructure? We've got to do it anyway. We have to do it. It must be done, and much has been said. I would just echo this: good-paying jobs that can be explored, a dollar spent in the community -- all your communities is going to turn at least three times, maybe seven -- that's stimulus, and we have to do it anyway. So it's very, very important.

It reminded me of the time -- I was thinking about the ranking member's statement about what else we could do with this to do the laboratory investigation and have them make these roads last longer. It might be time to think about that -- at least start.

And lastly, I would like to ask those of you that -- from your extensive background, we're going to have to fund -- you know, this is -- it's not the purpose of this hearing, but it's on the table, it's coming -- how we're going to raise the revenues to keep up with our transportation infrastructure. We've got to do that, and just doing it like we've been doing it is not going to work. And it's going to be a heavy lift, a big decision, but I think those of you that are governors and mayors and involved so much, with all the background you've got and information at your fingertips, that you've got to participate. And we might as well be prepared -- and if you want to make some comment today, we'd probably welcome that, but we're here to try to stimulate the economy, which we must do, we must do.

So Mr. Chairman, I thank you for calling this. I'll have to be out for a few -- for an hour because of another commitment, but I'll be here until then and I'll be back for the rest of the time. Extremely important. Thank you for making sure this is happening. Thank you very much.

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REP. LEONARD BOSWELL (D-IA): Thank you Mr. Chairman. Mr. Decota, I am curious you I think made a comment about the global financial crisis had impact on the airport industry to raise capital to fund projects. Will you elaborate on that a little bit?

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REP. BOSWELL: Can I ask you, also on your airport operation, would you comment on the impact of not having any multi, or FAA, or real authorization? We work very hard on that in the House, but we haven't gotten it through the whole system yet, and I assume it has some impact on how you can make your plans.

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REP. BOSWELL: We'll hope we'll get that done this coming session.

And lastly, I have a little bit of time, I make a little apology that I advocate for general aviation, I am curious with what you have told us about your operation. What impact has that had on your customers? Have you been able to grow? Have you been able to keep? What's your situation?

MR. DECOTA: Well, New York, in our case, you know, we handled 110 million passengers last year. We thought we'd handle 111 and a half this year, plus there's a lot of --

REP. BOSWELL: I wanted to address more towards the general aviation, not --

MR. DECOTA: Okay, well in the case of general aviation, we have about 200,000 aircraft movements every year out of 1,400,000 plane movements all within 25 miles of the Statue of Liberty. I'm being told by the local fixed- base operators who handle that activity that that activity is down severely. I was told by one yesterday at -- (inaudible) -- airport that the activities September versus September --

REP. BOSWELL: Well, if that's down, that has economic impact on you, too.

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