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Peters Statement on President’s Budget

WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Gary Peters (MI) today released the following statement after the release of the President’s FY 2016 budget:

“America cannot govern on short-term, continuing resolutions that lead to instability, and Congress and the President should work together on a bipartisan basis to develop a budget proposal that strengthens our middle class and best reflects our values as a nation. I agree that sequestration is a misguided policy that jeopardizes our continued economic recovery and poses serious threats to both our national security and domestic priorities, and we should take action to end these harmful spending cuts while making more targeted cuts to help reduce the deficit. 

“However, I am very disappointed that the President’s budget allocates no funding for the New International Trade Crossing in Detroit. This is a project that will create thousands of Michigan jobs, enhance trade with Canada, our closest trading partner, and transform Michigan into a transportation and logistics hub for trade, manufacturing and innovation. As a member of the Senate Homeland Security Committee, I will continue working with Congress, the Obama Administration, the Snyder Administration and the Canadian Government to pursue all options to ensure funding for construction and staffing of the customs plaza.”

Peters has been an outspoken supporter for the New International Trade Crossing (NITC) in Detroit. The NITC is an international construction project to create a new bridge over the Detroit River between Detroit, MI and Windsor, Ontario. The Detroit-Windsor crossing is one of the busiest and most important international crossings in the United States.

Peters previously introduced legislation to secure funding for a federal customs plaza for the NITC. Funding for the customs plaza remains one of the last hurdles surrounding the project. The Government of Canada has agreed to fund construction and land acquisition of the $2.1 billion project, per an agreement with the State of Michigan to be repaid by tolls.

The project has bipartisan support and has been endorsed by Michigan Governor Rick Snyder, Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan and Grand Rapids Mayor George Heartwell. The NITC has broad support from business and labor organizations such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the Detroit Regional Chamber, the Michigan Chamber of Commerce and Michigan Farm Bureau. Labor organizations such as the Michigan State AFL-CIO, United Auto Workers, International Union of Operating Engineers and Utility Workers Union of America have also expressed broad support.