Former South Bend, Ind., Mayor Pete Buttigieg was confirmed as secretary of transportation by a vote of 86-13.
A former rival of President Biden’s for the Democratic presidential nomination, Buttigieg is the youngest member of Biden’s Cabinet at age 39. He will take the reins at a sprawling agency, with jurisdiction over everything from federal highways to pipelines, air traffic and railroads, employing some 55,000 people.
“We applaud the efforts of both the Republicans and Democrats in the Senate for working together to quickly confirm the nomination of Pete Buttigieg,” said National Stone, Sand & Gravel Association (NSSGA) President and CEO Michael Johnson.”Our Transportation Department needs a dynamic leader like Buttigieg, who as a former mayor has extremely valuable hands-on experience in infrastructure planning and development.
“Our highways, roads and bridges are an essential piece of every community, as they serve as a lifeline for so many Americans in both rural and urban areas,” Johnson said. “They physically connect people with their extended family and friends, groceries and restaurants, healthcare and activities, as well as places of work and worship. Beyond that, they are also quite literally the economic circulatory system for our nation.
“Therefore, it is key to have a long-term highway trust fund plan in future infrastructure proposals as well as solve the financial issues of the Highway Trust Fund,” Johnson concluded. “NSSGA supports advancing effective infrastructure policies such as a multi-year highway reauthorization bill, fixing the Highway Trust Fund, and continued pandemic relief for state Departments of Transportation. NSSGA looks forward to working forward with Secretary Buttigieg and his department on implementing effective infrastructure policies.”
Brian P. McGuire, president and CEO of Associated Equipment Distributors (AED), agreed with Johnson’s sentiments.
“AED congratulates Pete Buttigieg on his confirmation to serve as President Biden’s Transportation Secretary,” McGuire said. “The hard work starts immediately as Secretary Buttigieg inherits a neglected transportation infrastructure and a Highway Trust Fund that’s on the verge of insolvency. I’m confident that with Secretary Buttigieg’s leadership and President Biden’s bold infrastructure vision, these enduring issues will be addressed, and America’s transportation infrastructure will once again be the envy of the world.
“There is no better way to create jobs and economic opportunity across the country than investing in rebuilding the United States’ dilapidated infrastructure,” McGuire said. “Our leaders can’t continue to sit by and watch our nation’s infrastructure crumble, putting off tough decisions for the next generation. AED looks forward to working with the president, Secretary Buttigieg and congressional leaders to create a sustainable and impactful recovery that ensures economic security, stability and prosperity for all Americans.”