Area US Reps. support Ports-to-Plains Highway Act


Today, Congressman Ronny Jackson (TX-13) signed on as an original co-sponsor to the Ports-to-Plains Highway Act of 2021, sponsored by Congressmen Jodey Arrington (TX-19) and Henry Cuellar (TX-28). This legislation would designate Interstate 27 as a route on the federal Interstate Highway system, specifically benefitting TX-13 by paving the way for I-27’s extension through the Texas Panhandle.

Jackson said: “I promised to advocate for policies that are pro-growth, pro-worker, and pro-American when I came to Congress. The Ports-to-Plains Highway Act of 2021 is a perfect example of those policy goals as it would add 178,600 construction jobs and $17.2 billion to Texas’ GDP. In the long term, expanding and modernizing I-27 through the Texas Panhandle will promote growth by connecting rural areas to the federal Interstate Highway system, strengthen avenues for trade which is particularly advantageous for TX-13’s agriculture industry, increase safety, and save billions in travel costs.”

Over 70 entities representing nearly one million Texans endorse the interstate designation, including the Amarillo Chamber of Commerce, Amarillo Economic Development Corporation, Amarillo Metropolitan Planning Organization, the cities of Amarillo, Canyon, Dalhart, and Dumas, Valero Energy, and more.

Background: 

The 2,300-mile Ports-to Plains Alliance Corridor extends from Mexico to Canada through eight states in America’s Heartland. It is part of the National Highway System, which makes up about five percent of the Nation’s roads, yet it carries over 55 percentt of the vehicle miles travelled.

It is an energy corridor serving traditional resources like oil and gas as well as renewable resources like wind, solar, and biofuels. Development of these resources is critical to our energy security, providing a stable and more affordable power source. The Ports-to- Plains Alliance Corridor serves the, Bakken, Niobrara, Permian Basin, Cline, Eagle Ford, emerging Mexico energy shale plays and the oils sands in Alberta.

It is an agriculture corridor running through four of the top eight farming states. It moves agriculture products from the Ports-to-Plains regions to urban domestic markets, to export markets on the coast, and on the Canadian and Mexican borders. 

It is an international trade corridor serving major international borders crossings connecting Texas to Mexico and connecting Montana and North Dakota to Canada. 

It is a connectivity and economic development corridor running through and connecting small towns and rural communities in America’s Heartland. To unleash America’s economy, create millions of new jobs, and boost economic growth, it is essential to connect these small towns and rural areas to the 21st economy. Moreover, a modern, four-lane divided highway will improve safety through the Corridor.

It is a cost-effective way to reduce congestion on Interstate-25 and Interstate-35. It runs north-south between two highly congested, north-south interstate highway corridors – I-35 to the east and I-25 to the west. The Ports-to-Plains Alliance Corridor can be cost-effective part of the solution. Upgrading the corridor to a modern four-lane, divided facility would cost a small fraction of the cost of improvements to I-25 and I-35. Once upgraded, a significant number of trucks are likely to divert to the Ports-to-Plains Corridor rather than sitting in congestion on I-25 or I-35, thereby providing congestion relief on these routes. Improved on time delivery and decreased transportation costs for goods and services will be the result.

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