Inadequate highways, dangerous rural roads, poor cell or internet service, and aging water systems plague most of our district. Our crumbling infrastructure puts us at an economic disadvantage and threatens lives. Much of the north state is made unnecessarily remote by poorly maintained roads and a lack of highways, which discourage investment, raise costs for businesses, and increase road accidents. California has the second-highest fatality rate on rural roads and the second-worst rating for rural road conditions in the country. Lack of broadband internet and cell service in large areas of the north state inhibit access to education, services, and economic opportunities. The Oroville Dam spillway disaster last year showed us all just how critical is the need for maintenance, repair, and improvement to our water system.
Investment in improving our highways and roads and our communications networks will revitalize our rural economy by helping local businesses prosper and encouraging economic investment in the north state. Improved roads will save lives by reducing road fatalities and decreasing response time for paramedics. Improving access to phone and internet will also help all people access the resources, knowledge, and skills they need to improve their livelihoods and quality of life.
I will fight to secure federal funding for highway and water infrastructure improvement and encourage public and private investment in communications infrastructure.
My priorities for infrastructure development are:
Improve revenue to the Highway Trust Fund, and secure grants from the Fund, for highway renovation and expansion in the north state
Improve and encourage public and private investment (through direct investment and incentives) in internet and cell phone infrastructure, especially in rural areas, including wireless options
Work directly with local municipal and transit districts and county bodies to gather information and ensure citizens’ most critical needs are being addressed quickly and efficiently