It’s July 2018, And There’s No Movement on Infrastructure Legislation

Matthew McMullan

Matthew McMullan Communications Manager, Alliance for American Manufacturing

Last week, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi joined Rep. Dan Kildee and other House Democrats for a tour of ongoing water infrastructure repair projects in Flint, Michigan.

Earlier that day, Pelosi and Kildee (who represents Flint) published an opinion that used the Flint Water Crisis as a jumping-off point. It’s title: “Let Flint serve as a warning: Congress must to do more to improve the nation’s infrastructure.”

“The hard truth is, what happened to Flint is not an isolated event. Many other America’s cities and towns are just one mistake away from a similar crisis. What happened to Flint is not an anomaly—rather, it’s a warning to other communities across the country that we must get serious about repairing our aging infrastructure.”

This is not new. It’s becoming old hat to cite the regular report cards from the American Society of Civil Engineers that turn in terrible grades for the country’s public underpinnings. And polling shows people are very much O.K. with spending public money on public transportation infrastructure – indicative of what they feel about other infrastructure, like those for energy and water. 

But there has been little political appetite to tackle our evegreen infrastructure problem.

One (retiring) congressman, House Transportation and Infrastructure Chairman Bill Shuster (R-Pa.), plans to shortly put forth an infrastructure bill for consideration, but he admits it’s to start discussion for next year. “He has acknowledged enacting a major bill in the second half of an election year would be tough,” reports Roll Call. “Floor time and congressional appetite for major bills are typically constrained.”  

So I guess we’re gonna wait another year before Washington gets around to (maybe) addressing our lack of long-term infrastructure fixes that guarantee federal Buy America requirements.

No matter. I’m sure President Donald Trump (who boasted of a 10-year, $1 trillion plan during his 2016 campaign) has a laser-like focus on this chronic problem. Right? What’s he up to today?

***

Reposted from AAM

Posted In: Allied Approaches, From Alliance for American Manufacturing

Union Matters

Get to Know AFL-CIO's Affiliates: National Association of Letter Carriers

From the AFL-CIO

Next up in our series that takes a deeper look at each of our affiliates is the National Association of Letter Carriers.

Name of Union: National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC)

Mission: To unite fraternally all city letter carriers employed by the U.S. Postal Service for their mutual benefit; to obtain and secure rights as employees of the USPS and to strive at all times to promote the safety and the welfare of every member; to strive for the constant improvement of the Postal Service; and for other purposes. NALC is a single-craft union and is the sole collective-bargaining agent for city letter carriers.

Current Leadership of Union: Fredric V. Rolando serves as president of NALC, after being sworn in as the union's 18th president in 2009. Rolando began his career as a letter carrier in 1978 in South Miami before moving to Sarasota in 1984. He was elected president of Branch 2148 in 1988 and served in that role until 1999. In the ensuing years, he worked in various roles for NALC before winning his election as a national officer in 2002, when he was elected director of city delivery. In 2006, he won election as executive vice president. Rolando was re-elected as NALC president in 2010, 2014 and 2018.

Brian Renfroe serves as executive vice president, Lew Drass as vice president, Nicole Rhine as secretary-treasurer, Paul Barner as assistant secretary-treasurer, Christopher Jackson as director of city delivery, Manuel L. Peralta Jr. as director of safety and health, Dan Toth as director of retired members, Stephanie Stewart as director of the Health Benefit Plan and James W. “Jim” Yates as director of life insurance.

Number of Members: 291,000 active and retired letter carriers.

Members Work As: City letter carriers.

Industries Represented: The United States Postal Service.

History: In 1794, the first letter carriers were appointed by Congress as the implementation of the new U.S. Constitution was being put into effect. By the time of the Civil War, free delivery of city mail was established and letter carriers successfully concluded a campaign for the eight-hour workday in 1888. The next year, letter carriers came together in Milwaukee and the National Association of Letter Carriers was formed.

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There is Dignity in All Work

There is Dignity in All Work