With the infrastructure of the United States crumbling and politicians making empty promises to attempt to deliver a plan, International Union of Operating Engineers Legislative and Political Director Jeff Soth discussed what needs to be done to improve the United States infrastructure on America’s Work Force Union Podcast.
Who are the International Union of Operating Engineers
The International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE) is a building trades union composed of heavy equipment operators, mechanics and surveyors. The members of the IUOE do a great deal of work on infrastructure projects.
Extending the Surface Transportation Act
Soth said that he is disappointed that a long term extension the Surface Transportation Act could not be established. The legislation provides funding for infrastructure projects and programs, helping the United States modernize our crumbling infrastructure.
He said the problem continues to be ‘kicked down the road’ with no fix in sight. Both sides of the political aisle fight over infrastructure although it is one of the few issues that has bipartisan agreement on the need for action.
In the interview, Soth said President Trump ran on a massive infrastructure bill, promising a full modernization of infrastructure systems. Despite this being a major campaign issue, President Trump has not managed to make this a central theme of his administration.
He said the main reason why a long term infrastructure bill has not been passed is because of the lack of agreement on how the plan would be paid for.
Soth said the best bet for infrastructure and the members of the IUOE is to elect Joe Biden. He said the Biden infrastructure plan ticks all of the boxes set by the IUOE. The plan includes high labor standards and diversity in the types of infrastructure projects it will target.