March 29, 2010

Whitehouse Convenes Senate Committee Field Briefing to Track Recovery Act Job Creation

“Recovery Act Investments in Rhode Island: Creating Jobs, Protecting our Environment, and Upgrading Infrastructure” Briefing from the Environment and Public Works Committee

Providence, RI – A field briefing hosted by the Oversight Subcommittee of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, which is chaired by Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, today examined the impact of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) on the economy and environment in Rhode Island. Entitled “Recovery Act Investments in Rhode Island: Creating Jobs, Protecting our Environment, and Upgrading Infrastructure,” the briefing heard from a number of Rhode Islanders who are utilizing Recovery Act funds to support jobs and build public works projects.

“As one of the first areas of the country to be settled, Rhode Island has an old and proud industrial tradition. Our age, however, means that there are numerous pieces of our infrastructure that have fallen into decrepitude over time,” Whitehouse said. “The American taxpayers who sent Recovery Act money to Rhode Island have gotten a double-benefit for their investment. In addition to the main purpose of creating jobs and slowing economic decline, the Recovery Act has helped to repair infrastructure that was in desperate need of work.”

Michael Lewis, the Director of the Rhode Island Department of Transportation said, “Last month, the nation marked the one-year anniversary of the signing of ARRA. It is interesting to note that the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) recognized Rhode Island as of one of the prime examples of ARRA success. We celebrated this success here in Rhode Island by issuing our own report, ‘Putting People to Work.’ I would like to close by stating – Putting people to work works for Rhode Island.”

The briefing heard testimony from the following witnesses:

• Michael Lewis, Director, Rhode Island Department of Transportation
• Michael Sullivan, Director, Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management
• Joel Matthews, Director of Planning and Development, City of Woonsocket
• Jeffrey Saletin, President, Saletin Real Estate Group
• Stephen A. Cardi, Jr., Executive Vice President, Cardi Corporation


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