Tuesday, December 23, 2008

USCM Releases Third Report of Main Street Recovery Plan

The U.S. Conference of Mayors recently released the third installment of their Ready-to-Go Jobs Report that inventories infrastructure projects from cities around the country that could be started and completed in just two calendar years to create over a million jobs with help from federal dollars.

This report contains examples of the kinds of projects that, if funded through existing channels, would contribute significantly to the President-elect's stated goal of creating 2.5 million jobs to spur the national economy.

The USCM, an organization that I preside, represents over 1,300 mayors and their cities. The organization invited its members to submit what projects they could start right away and put people to work.

Investing in MainStreet metropolitan economies, which comprise 90% of our gross domestic product and drive the national economy, is the most direct path to creating jobs and stimulating the business that can begin to reverse the current economic downturn. Additionally, metro infrastructure projects can start quickly because the funding for them can come directly to their cities through existing funding channels such as the Community Development Block Grant.

The mayors of 641 cities of all sizes in all regions of the country reported a total of 15,221 local infrastructure projects are "ready to go." These projects represent an infrastructure investment of $96,638,419,313 that would be capable of producing an estimated 1,221,677 jobs in calendar years 2009 and 2010.

The USCM accepted each city’s project submittal, and each Mayor and City is responsible for its justification for putting these projects forward.

However, Mayors recognize that this list must go through a review process through which Congress and the new Administration will identify projects eligible for funding. During this process, the new Administration and Congress must create a selection criteria to decide which projects are feasible and would be of most benefit to the community.

To view the entire report and individual city results, please go to http://www.usmayors.org/.

- Manny