HAUPPAUGE, N.Y., Aug. 27, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The Long Island Contractors' Association (LICA) is throwing down the gauntlet to the delegates of both political parties who are traveling to their respective Presidential nominating conventions, asking them whether the roads and bridges they will be taking are in better shape than the ones on Long Island and throughout New York.
LICA Executive Director Marc Herbst is going so far as to send to the respective state political leaders road maps of the respective cities (Charlotte for the Democrats and Tampa for the Republicans) where the political conventions will be held so that they better appreciate the core issue of infrastructure funding.
"Genuine political leadership starts with an understanding of the role of government and among its primary functions is to provide a functioning infrastructure for the purpose of strengthening commerce. Few in Washington seem to understand that these days," stated Herbst.
In reviewing the history of political conventions and infrastructure the LICA leader says past performance of political parties has little to do with future returns. "We have been told that the first `political platform' written by Republican Party at its 1856 Philadelphia convention placed heavy emphasis on infrastructure. They wanted to begin building a transcontinental railroad to the Pacific which would occur under Lincoln almost a decade later. The impact of that decision is still dramatic and obvious."
Infrastructure historians say that a half-century later, in 1912, the Democrats, meeting in Baltimore to nominate Woodrow Wilson, pushed forward the idea of a comprehensive road network, declaring, "We favor national aid to state and local authorities in the construction and maintenance of post roads."
That vision wouldn't really see steel and concrete until the 1950s when Republican President Dwight Eisenhower brought the Interstate Highway System into existence, although he needed the strategic cooperation of the Democrats who led the Congress. "Bi partisan agreement on infrastructure," noted Herbst. "Now that's historic."
In sending road maps of the convention cities to New York GOP Chairman Edward Cox and Democratic Co-Chairmen Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner and Manhattan Assemblyman Keith Wright Herbst explained, "You can Google Map, you can Foursquare coordinates, you can use any technology you want but it's still concrete and steel that will get delegates to their seats for the purpose of nominating the next President of the United States. Everyone needs to remember `no infrastructure – no incumbents'."
LICA represents the interests of over a hundred and fifty of Long Island's region's premier heavy construction general contractors, subcontractors, suppliers and industry supporters. Focused primarily in the transportation infrastructure construction industry, such as highways, bridges, sewers and other public works, LICA's member companies play a significant role in the economic vitality of Nassau and Suffolk Counties. For information visit www.licanys.org
SOURCE Long Island Contractors' Association (LICA)