March 2017 News & JFI Update 3/31/2017
Just Fix It Update 
Poor Road Conditions, LESS Funding Proposed 

In the first of what will be a series of weekly factsheets, TDA looks at how the Governor's proposed transportation budget compares to current spending.

The purpose of these sheets is to educate the media and policymakers on transportation matters.

Future topics will include: "throw away" costs, safety, the cost of poor roads, the cost of delays, and states that have stepped forward to fund transportation.

View factsheet
Economic Development Tastes Sweet

March 28, 2017

The Village of Pleasant Prairie just chalked up yet another win. The announcement that German candy maker Haribo is opening its first North American candy factory in Pleasant Prairie is another hugely impressive accomplishment for this village with a population of a little over 20,000 people. Of course, this smallish village is not an island. It is located in Kenosha County perfectly situated between Chicago and Milwaukee, immediately adjacent to a recently rebuilt and expanded stretch of Interstate 94.

The village officials, Kenosha County officials, and economic development professionals in the region need to be commended. They have clearly identified their strengths and accentuated them beautifully.

One of the economic development professionals who has been a key player in this region is Jerry Franke with Wispark. This group has been key in developing LakeView Corporate Park, as well as numerous others in the region.

Mr. Franke explains perfectly both why they have been successful, as well as the vast potential of the region that has not yet been realized. “Southeast Wisconsin is located at the northern end of one of only a few megalopolises in the United States. The southern metro area of Milwaukee from Oak Creek to Pleasant Prairie represents outstanding location for one of the fastest growing sectors of our national economy — the distribution and logistics sector. Companies such as Amazon, Uline, Meijer, Ariens, Gordon Foods, and the like have recognized that locating such facilities between the two large Chicago and Milwaukee metropolitan areas along or near the Interstate system is the most efficient way to get the goods and services that consumers need and want to the greatest number of people as quickly as possible.” Read more

Wisconsin’s Roads Rank 49th in the Nation
February 28, 2017

U.S. News and World Report weighs in with their new state rankings. In two key transportation measures, Wisconsin is toward the bottom of the barrel: #49 in road quality, and #41 in transportation overall. 

See transportation ratings

News from around the Nation

States Continue to Look for Ways to Fund Transportation

Since the start of 2017, the Transportation Investment Advocacy Center has tracked 104 transportation funding bills being considered in 32 states. This number closely matches the amount of legislation TIAC tracked over the same time period in 2015 and 2016, and is projected to grow as new bills are introduced throughout the year.

Motor fuel taxes remain the most popular revenue proposal vehicle in 2017, with 34 bills introduced in 18 states that include a motor fuel tax increase. Non-fuel tax recurring funding is the second most proposed topic, with 26 bills including either registration fee increases, tolling, sales taxes, license and weight fees, or another source of revenue that would continually contribute to the state’s transportation fund. Local funding and electric vehicle fees are also popular transportation revenue topics this legislative session. Read more

U.S. Infrastructure Rated a D+

Every four years, America’s civil engineers provide an assessment of the nation’s 16 major infrastructure categories in ASCE’s Infrastructure Report Card. Using an A to F school report card format, the Report Card examines infrastructure conditions and needs, assigning grades and making recommendations to raise them. 

The  2017 Infrastructure Report Card shows the U.S. has made some  progress toward restoring our  infrastructure. However, it has not been enough to change the nation's grade. Like in 2013, ASCE once again gives America’s infrastructure a D+.

The Report card provides state specific information. 

Trump’s “Skinny Budget” Cuts Transportation by 13 Percent

Despite promising a robust infrastructure investment plan on the campaign trail, the president’s first budget cuts USDOT discretionary spending by 13%.

The proposal would eliminate TIGER Grants, limit funding for new transit projects and end funding for Amtrak’s long-distance passenger trains outside the lucrative Northeast Corridor.

The Trump budget would also privatize air traffic control and end Essential Air Service subsidies that support commercial air service in smaller, more rural communities.

In addition, $1 billion or 16% would be cut from the Army Corps of Engineers. 

Association News
Monday, April 24,  Noon to 3 p.m.
Milwaukee Athletic Club
758 N. Broadway, Milwaukee

The efficient movement of goods and people is at the heart of a vibrant economy. However, there is a growing consensus the U.S. is not keeping up. Not to be left behind, many states are making the investments to position themselves for growth.

Come hear from a national expert on the intersection of transportation investment and corporate location selection. And from several conservative states which have enacted sustainable transportation packages and the benefits currently accruing to businesses and residents. Finally, hear from Wisconsin business leaders about the pressing need to come up with a plan to fund reconstruction of Wisconsin’s southeast freeways.

Click here for more information.

There is no fee to attend.  Please RSVP by April 19th.
May 10th Capitol Day
Madison Club/ Monona Terrace

Thanks to all who participated in the unprecedented Turnout for Transportation event last fall or in the Just Fix It campaign in any way.

You were an integral part of starting the statewide dialogue about the condition of Wisconsin’s infrastructure and its impact on Wisconsin residents and businesses. And you kept the issue in the news.

Now we need to keep the issue of sustainable transportation funding in front of our state elected leaders.

Click here for more information.  

There is no fee for the event. Please RSVP by May 3rd.

Save the Date
  • TDA Annual Meeting: Wednesday, September 20th