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Transportation is a critical element of our nation’s economic competitiveness. Highways are the veins and arteries of our economy through which commerce flows.

Today, America’s infrastructure is deteriorating and lacks adequate capacity. Crippling congestion and roads in poor condition cost businesses and commuters almost $115 billion a year in wasted time and fuel. Americans spend more than 4 billion hours per year stuck in traffic. And due to cumbersome regulators, red tape and bureaucracy, as a rule of thumb, if the federal government is involved in a transportation project, it can take three times as long and costs twice as much.

The core of America’s infrastructure was built to support a population of around 250 million people. Today there are approximately 300 million Americans, and in only 27 years, our population is projected to top 400 million. America’s infrastructure is deteriorating and lacks adequate capacity to meet this challenge.

To further add to our problems, highway and transit programs have been extended eight times since 2009, preventing Congress from passing much-needed reforms and robbing states from the stability they need to take on major projects that can provide Americans with long-term employment and improve our competitiveness.

Read more from Congressman Bill Shuster.