The National Association of Regional Councils (NARC) supports additional funding and local authority directed to the maintenance and improvement of freight infrastructure by establishing a dedicated funding source in the next surface transportation authorization.
- Support a robust federal government partnership with local governments and regional planning organizations to resolve critical goods movement issues.
- Engage directly with local elected officials, who understand the local needs, opportunities and obligations through their “on-the-ground” perspective.
- Encourage partnerships between federal, state, regional and local government, as well as public and private industry.
- Allow federal funds to leverage the other monies (federal, state, private and local), especially for freight projects with impact beyond local and regional borders.
- Provide consistent, dedicated and firewalled funding for freight infrastructure investments that are derived from new revenue sources.
- Allow freight-specific funding to be allocated to and used by Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) for freight planning that is coordinated with other transportation, environment and economic development planning.
- Distribute funding on a multi- and intermodal freight system-wide basis without preference to any individual mode of transportation.
- Provide incentives to the private sector and state and local governments to improve freight infrastructure.
- Support creative financing provisions and direct federal investment for freight infrastructure.
- Recognize freight and goods movement as a national priority.
- Acknowledge freight mobility as a high priority in federal, state and local transportation planning.
- Encourage the integration of goods movement into plans that building livable/sustainable communities.
- Include urban, suburban and rural regional planning organizations in freight planning and implementation activities.
- Establish national proactive transportation policies that efficiently move goods to improve regional, state and local economies.
- Enhance security through adequate freight infrastructure protection, a direct function of national security.
- Recognize that facility protection is assisted through electronic systems, design specifi cations and other non-human interactions.
Freight transportation is the backbone of America’s commerce. Imports and exports, which fuel our economy, are doubling every ten years. Freight traffic within the United States’ borders will increase 100% by 2020. During that same period of time, foreign trade is expected to increase by 187 percent, while containerized cargo will experience an explosive 350 percent increase. The domestic and international freight capacity of our ports, waterways, transfer facilities, and highway and rail connectors will greatly determine whether we maintain our international edge in the global marketplace and the quality of our economic life. Failure of trade gateway infrastructure to keep pace with growth in demand will increase costs and hold back expansion and prosperity in coming years. There is a clear correlation and necessary relationship between goods movement, business, economy, our local environment, our global and environment public health. A more efficient and improved goods movement system will create an improved environment with greater public health benefits.