Cornyn Hosts Senate Transportation Hearing in Valley

In: All News   Posted 08/11/2003

BROWNSVILLE – U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, a member of the Senate subcommittee on Transportation and Infrastructure, hosted a field hearing Monday in Brownsville to address critical transportation needs in the Rio Grande Valley that impact all of Texas. "Texas has been growing by leaps and bounds over the last 10 to 20 years. Unfortunately, our transportation infrastructure, particularly our roads, have not kept up,” Cornyn said. “This hearing will allow the Senate to address the transportation bill while giving the needs of the Valley and of all parts of Texas strong consideration.” The Environment and Public Works Committee (EPW) will begin consideration of a major transportation bill when the Senate returns from August recess. the Chairman of the EPW Committee, Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), joined Cornyn, a member of the committee, to chair the field hearing which was held on the UT Brownsville campus."South Texas is an important point of entry into the United States and solid transportation infrastructure here is critical not only for the local region, but also stretching into my home state of Oklahoma and beyond,” Sen. Inhofe said. “I appreciate my colleague Senator Cornyn for inviting the committee here to listen to the transportation concerns in one of the most rapidly growing parts of the country as we head toward reauthorization of the transportation bill.” Cornyn will work to reauthorize the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (TEA-21) in the subcommittee on Transportation and Infrastructure where the process begins. “Among my top priorities is ensuring that Texans receive a greater return on the money they send to Washington. I will also work for the transportation projects of local communities here in the Valley to relieve congestion, increase safety and facilitate continued economic growth,” Cornyn said. the panelists who presented their needs and concerns to the Committee include Emil Frankel, Assistant Secretary for U.S. Department of Transportation; Gilberto Hinojosa, Cameron County Judge; Eddie Trevino, Mayor of Brownsville; Connie de la Garza, Mayor of Harlingen; John David Franz, Mayor of Hidalgo; Commissioner Johnny Johnson, Texas Department of Transportation; Bill Stockton, Assistant Agency Director – Texas Transportation Institute. Cornyn is co-chairman of Transportation Excellence for the 21st Century (TEX-21), a not for profit statewide coalition primarily composed of mayors, city council members, county judges and other community leaders who focus on transportation issues. TEX-21 addresses key concerns regarding transportation, especially funding, safety, design standards, NAFTA Trade Corridors, national defense and homeland security. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison and 25 members of the Texas Congressional delegation are also on the panel. Cornyn also serves on the President’s Export Council which recognizes that transportation is critical to expanding sales of American products beyond our borders. The Council advises the administration on policies that affect U.S. trade performance and promotes export expansion.