WASHINGTON – The Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO (TTD) Sept. 6 endorsed certain changes by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) to Buy America policy that will lead to job creation and stronger transportation and manufacturing sectors.
“TTD and our affiliated unions have long advocated for strong transportation Buy America policies,” said TTD President Edward Wytkind. “We should be using the taxpayers’ investments in transportation to maximize U.S. job creation.”
TTD submitted comments today to the FHWA supporting its review of three Buy America general waivers that exempt certain products from the requirement that FHWA-funded projects use American-made iron, steel and other manufactured products. TTD also supports the agency’s determination to apply Buy America standards to fuel efficient and low emission vehicles and related equipment purchased with FHWA Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement (CMAQ) Program funds.
“FHWA’s decision to apply Buy America standards to CMAQ-funded purchases of vehicles is an investment in American manufacturers, including the thousands of workers who melt and pour steel and produce parts and components for vehicle production,” said Wytkind. “We applaud the continuing efforts of this Administration to beef up transportation Buy America rules.”
TTD suggested the FHWA require that no less than 60 percent of each vehicle be U.S. made, increasing that percentage over time until it reaches 100 percent. This should be coupled with the requirement that the vehicles be assembled in the U.S.
“The bottom line is that the FHWA has the authority to set standards that ensure federal transportation spending supports American jobs. We should expect no less from our government as it invests public funds,” said Wytkind.