LaHood weighs in on highway funding at Cat event

By |  October 31, 2014

Built for it.

Former Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood speaks at a Caterpillar event on Oct. 29.

Former Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood speaks at a Caterpillar event on Oct. 29.

Caterpillar’s new slogan raises a number of questions: Are we built to handle the new highway bill? Are we built to grow, despite the current depletion in government funding? These are questions Ray LaHood, former secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation, addressed at Cat’s press event in Peoria, Ill.

“America is one big pothole,” LaHood said. “We used to be number one in infrastructure. We’re number 16 now.”

So, like America’s infrastructure, how do we come back from this economic downturn? LaHood suggested raising gas taxes by 10 cents and using the additional revenue to fund roads.

Similar to that, the aggregates industry must raise its standards by boosting expectations, enhancing equipment and developing innovations.

“When you think of a roadway, you think of it as a way for people to get from one place to another. But the other way to think about it is as an economic corridor,” LaHood said.

Transportation advocates continuously say the highway bill is an economic corridor for the trailblazers of the industry. Now is a challenging time for aggregate producers and manufacturers, but the ones who power through this period will be the ones to revolutionize the industry.

“Without infrastructure, America would not be the great country it is,” LaHood said.

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About the Author:

Allison Kral is the former senior digital media manager for North Coast Media (NCM). She completed her undergraduate degree at Ohio University where she received a Bachelor of Science in magazine journalism from the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism. She works across a number of digital platforms, which include creating e-newsletters, writing articles and posting across social media sites. She also creates content for NCM's Portable Plants magazine, GPS World magazine and Geospatial Solutions. Her understanding of the ever-changing digital media world allows her to quickly grasp what a target audience desires and create content that is appealing and relevant for any client across any platform.

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