To The Herald-Whig:
We would like to take a moment to express our gratitude to the nearly two dozen people from West-Central Illinois and Iowa who drove an hour or longer to Peoria on April 8 to advocate to our committee for much-needed improvements to U.S. 34.
Because of a hefty agenda, these residents waited more than three hours to share information about the perils of this highway with state senators who are exploring local construction needs throughout Illinois. We appreciate their patience and tenacity.
To the members of the Highway 34 Coalition, the local mayors and concerned citizens who collectively shared their concerns about the dangers this road poses to them and their loved ones, we want you to know we hear you, and we understand the concerns you have brought to us.
Road construction and highway improvements will account for a significant part of any statewide infrastructure plan that lawmakers and the governor put together in the coming months. U.S. 34 will certainly be a part of that discussion.
We have embarked on a statewide set of hearings to help build bipartisan consensus in the General Assembly to support this much-needed legislation. Your advocacy is critical, and we urge you to continue reaching out to your local lawmakers. In addition, we invite you to contact any of us through our Springfield offices regarding this project.
Thank you again for making your concerns known and shining a light on this dangerous route. It is our hope that because of your advocacy and the advocacy of many others around Illinois, we will successfully pass major infrastructure legislation with bipartisan majorities in both the House and the Senate.
State Senator Andy Manar
Bunker Hill, Ill.
Chairman of the Senate Appropriations I Committee
State Senator Martin A. Sandoval
Chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee