June 10, 2017
By Steven Wishnia and Neal Tepel
Washington, DC – Four members of Ohio’s congressional delegation signed an open letter to President Donald Trump June 7 urging him to use a broader definition of “infrastructure” when constructing or repairing public works.
“We believe a wide view in interpreting what entails infrastructure will yield the best results to restore America’s greatness,” said the letter, signed by Reps. Marcy Kaptur, Tim Ryan, Marcia L. Fudge, and Joyce Beatty, all Democrats. That “wide view,” they said, should encompass not just highways, railroads, bridges and waterways, but “foundational assets” such as drinking-water systems, the national electric grid, and energy efficiency in homes and buildings—as well as national parks, monuments, and forests. “Perhaps no opportunity better presents a chance to revitalize the domestic steel industry than an expansive infrastructure initiative,” they added. But if the Great Lakes’ aging maritime infrastructure—particularly the Soo Locks, which enable shipping between Lake Superior and Lake Huron—isn’t repaired and has to close, they warned, it would cut off the supply of iron ore from the Mesabi Range and “send the United States’ economy into a dire recession, halting almost all domestic steel production.” Read more