WASHINGTON, D.C.— U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) has introduced the bipartisan “Transportation Infrastructure Grants and Economic Reinvestment” (TIGER) Act, a bill that would authorize the successful TIGER discretionary grant program that has already brought millions of dollars to Washington state infrastructure projects. The legislation would authorize the Secretary of Transportation to provide grants and Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act loans to States, local governments, ports, and transit agencies for critical transportation projects throughout the country. Since Senator Murray created TIGER in 2009, the TIGER program has awarded $4.1 billion to 342 innovative, multimodal projects with $204 million going to 13 projects in Washington state.
“The TIGER program represents exactly the type of investment our country should be making--addressing our nation’s long-standing transportation needs while creating good-paying, American jobs and working to grow our economy from the middle out, not the top down,” said Senator Murray, a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development. “I was proud to put the wheels in motion on this program during the depths of the recession when our nation needed jobs the most, but based on the demand that continues to this day, it’s clear that we can and should be doing so much more to help communities carry out projects that make our transportation systems safer and more efficient. This bipartisan bill will help keep our nation’s economic momentum going in the right direction and will ensure Washington state communities can continue to benefit from these critical investments.”
Other original cosponsors include Susan Collins (R-ME), Jack Reed (D-RI), and Dick Durbin (D-IL).
The TIGER Act, which authorizes funding for the TIGER grant program that Senator Murray created in 2009 through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, invests in a variety of transportation modes, selects projects through a transparent, competitive and merit-based process, and requires the Secretary of Transportation to provide a full description of how applications will be evaluated. The grant program also ensures that projects across the country are funded, and includes several provisions to balance the needs of urban and rural areas. As a senior member of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, Senator Murray has fought every year to include strong funding for the TIGER program in the annual appropriations bills.
Past projects in Washington state that have been awarded funding under the program include the North Spokane Corridor in Spokane, the Mercer Corridor Redevelopment project in Seattle, the South Park Bridge Replacement in King County, the West Vancouver Freight Access project at the Port of Vancouver, improvements to I-5 to relieve congestion around Joint Base Lewis-McChord, and modernization of Terminal 46 at the Port of Seattle.