Rep. Greg Stanton made the case to U.S. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg today to support critical Arizona infrastructure projects, including Interstate 11 and the regional light rail. Secretary Buttigieg appeared before a House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee hearing on “The Administration’s Priorities for Transportation Infrastructure.” 

“We need the federal government to support light rail throughout Phoenix, Mesa, and Tempe—and to support the construction of new highways such as Interstate 11 and the expansion of existing highways, including Interstate 10,” Stanton said. “The role of the both the local and federal government is particularly important in Arizona because state leaders have really fallen short when it comes to making infrastructure investment at the state level.” 

Stanton asked for Secretary Buttigieg’s support to complete an environmental review for I-11, the next step to advancing the interstate which would connect Phoenix to Las Vegas—a step forward Stanton has pushed for throughout his time in Congress. 

“I have heard a great deal from you and your colleagues—your neighbors in Nevada—on the importance of I-11,” Secretary Buttigieg said. “And we want to make sure that all of those federal processes happen as expeditiously as possible.” 

Earlier this month, Stanton sent a letter with Rep. Dina Titus of Nevada expressing the need to move forward with the review. 

Stanton also asked Secretary Buttigieg, a fellow former mayor, about the Department of Transportation’s plans to restore federal funding for local projects such as Phoenix’s Northwest and South Central light rail extensions.  

Secretary Buttigieg said depending on project proposals, financing tools such as TIFIA (Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act) or RRIF (Railroad Rehabilitation and Improvement Financing) could be applicable. He also foreshadowed the Department’s future legislative priorities, noting there’s a “great opportunity to expand” federal funding pathways. 

Video of Stanton’s full remarks and questions to Secretary Buttigieg is available here.

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