Business and government leaders from the Quad Cities will return from Washington DC today, after promoting local projects and learning about issues. About 30 people went on the three-day trip sponsored by the chamber of commerce.
Jason Gordon is the Vice President of Military and Public Affairs for the chamber. In recent years, they started meetings with the US Department of Transportation with gratitude for funding the new, I-74 bridge, which is currently under construction. But now, after the "Thank you's," Gordon says local leaders bring up the I-80 bridge which will be the next one that needs to be replaced.
The Quad Cities group also asked how to prepare transportation grant applications so the projects have the best chance of approval.
The leaders also met with members of Congress from Illinois and Iowa, plus the Pentagon. Two topics always come up related to the Rock Island Arsenal. One is steady employment for all the agencies and businesses located on the island. The other is the high cost of leasing for private companies.
Gordon says it's a problem because federal incentives have expired. There is similar language in this year's defense authorization bill, and he's interested in how the Army will interpret and implement it.
The city, county, and business leaders also met with officials from the Commerce Department and Economic Development Administration.