Funding Transportation & Infrastructure
Infrastructure is the foundation that connects our nation’s businesses, communities and people. Our nation’s public infrastructure system not only ensures the continuous transportation of people, goods, and services, but it also protects the health, safety, and welfare of the public. However, the infrastructure systems we rely on today are failing to keep pace with current and expanding needs. Simultaneously, investment in infrastructure is faltering. Given the tight fiscal constraints facing the nation today, it is necessary that we begin looking for new and collaborative ways to meet our need for improved and updated infrastructure.
Supporting the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act (FAST)
According to the American Society of Civil Engineers, 27% of Hawaiʻi’s major roads are in poor condition, costing local drivers $483 million per year. At the end of 2015, Congress came together to pass the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act, a bill Tulsi strongly supported. The FAST Act reauthorized critical funding for highway, bridge, transportation safety, and public transit projects in the U.S. through 2020, including more than $1.3 billion in federal transportation funds for Hawaiʻi. We must build on this progress by ensuring our federal government continues to make much-needed investments in infrastructure in our communities across the country.
Helping Keep Air Travel Affordable
As an island state, we are uniquely reliant on air travel. Air transportation is an essential lifeline for people in Hawaiʻi looking to find a job, start a small business, see a doctor, visit family and friends, and so much more. Tulsi has continued to fight to keep air travel taxes and fees as low as possible for people in Hawaiʻi and introduced the Passenger Fee Restructuring Exemptions Act (H.R.1074) at the start of the 114th Congress. This bill would limit the passenger security fee for Hawaiʻi, Alaska, and rural populations that rely on air travel.
Restoring International Flights to Kona Airport
Tulsi worked with a coalition of public and private partners to help resume international flights at Kona Airport after they were discontinued in 2010. Restoring international flights to Kona has both supported Hawaii's tourism-based economy and addressed critical safety and security needs for the state by providing a secondary international port in case of emergency.
More on Funding Transportation & Infrastructure
LĪHU‘E – County officials received exciting news this morning all the way from Washington, D.C. Kaua‘i County was successful in its bid for more than $13 million in grant funding from the U.S. Department of Transportation.
Known as the TIGER (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) grant program, the county will use the funding for the revitalization of the Līhu‘e Town Core.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the Hawai’i Congressional Delegation announced that the Honolulu International Airport will receive $16.5 million in grant funding from the U.S. Department of Transportation.
Washington, DC – In a hearing of the House Homeland Security Committee today, Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard (HI-02) asked Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson to work with local and state officials in Hawai‘i to resolve Customs and Border Patrol issues that are preventing Kona International Airport from accepting international flights. She also reiterated her serious concerns about the recent airline fee increase, and its impact on Hawai‘i travelers.