Bustos, Underwood Lead Delegation in Letter Urging Governor Pritzker to Prioritize Local Projects with Infrastructure Funding

WASHINGTON — This week, U.S. Representatives Cheri Bustos (IL-17) and Lauren Underwood (IL-14) led the Illinois congressional delegation in urging Governor Pritzker to prioritize Illinois Member Directed Projects (MDPs) for historic Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act funding.

The letter follows an effort by Congresswoman Bustos to secure federal funding for five transportation and infrastructure projects in Northwest and Central Illinois. More than $16 million in funding for these projects was advanced in the House-passed INVEST America Act in June 2021, and these projects are eligible for support allocated in the recently-passed bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. Members sent the letter to further advocate that federal funds that pass through the state be allocated to these projects.

“As we celebrate the enactment of the historic Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA), we urge you to prioritize our MDPs for IIJA funding to the maximum extent possible. The MDPs we selected represent the best of Illinois and meet many of our communities’ most urgent transportation needs, from Galena to Naperville. Completion of these projects will make our state safer, stronger, greener and more accessible. Local leaders have gone above and beyond to demonstrate deep and wide-ranging community support for these projects, and to ensure they are technically sound and integrated with long-term state and regional planning,” Members wrote to Governor Pritzker.

A full copy of the letter can be found here and below. A list of the five projects can be found here.

November 18, 2021

The Honorable J.B. Pritzker

Governor of Illinois

207 State House

Springfield, IL 62706

Dear Governor Pritzker,

Thank you to you and your staff for your assistance to our offices this year in helping identify outstanding Illinois Member Designated Projects (MDPs) through the House surface transportation reauthorization process. We are grateful for your leadership on infrastructure in Illinois through the Rebuild Illinois Capital Plan. Illinois is already investing in its infrastructure at historic levels and is now well-positioned to expand those investments with new federal funding. As we celebrate the enactment of the historic Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA), we urge you to prioritize our MDPs for IIJA funding to the maximum extent possible. 

The MDPs we selected represent the best of Illinois and meet many of our communities’ most urgent transportation needs, from Galena to Naperville. Completion of these projects will make our state safer, stronger, greener, and more accessible. Local leaders have gone above and beyond to demonstrate deep and wide-ranging community support for these projects, and to ensure they are technically sound and integrated with long-term state and regional planning. Our MDPs have also secured the backing of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and the full House of Representatives, which voted to approve them on July 1, 2021. 

As you know, decades of state and federal underinvestment have left Illinois’s infrastructure in disrepair, undermining our ability to compete economically on the world stage. Your administration has tackled this issue straight on with the Rebuild Illinois Capital Plan, establishing Illinois as a leader on infrastructure revitalization. Now, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act will bring nearly $17 billion to Illinois to improve our roads, bridges, highways, public transit, airports, broadband, and more. With the passage of IIJA, we can fast-track the priorities of the Rebuild Illinois Plan by directing this generational federal investment to best meet our state’s infrastructure needs.

We believe that goal is best achieved by swift completion of our MDPs, and respectfully urge your prioritization of projects eligible for federal funding from IIJA to the maximum extent possible. Please let us know if your Administration needs any additional federal resources or authorities to help advance this goal. Thank you for your continued partnership as we work together on behalf of Illinois families.

Sincerely, 

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