The world has changed a lot in the past few years, but the fundamentals remain – and the future is bright for the road builders. The Rebuild Illinois Program doubled the size of the IDOT Program. The Safe Roads Amendment, passed by nearly 80% of Illinois voters in 2016, means that the State can’t sweep this money into non-transportation purposes. And the Illinois Supreme Court recently decided that the Safe Roads Amendments applies to every unit of local government in Illinois, too. The federal Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act will mean about $15 billion to Illinois over the next five years – including $11.3 billion for roads and bridges and $4.5 billion for public transportation improvements. The IRTBA has been a part of all of these signature accomplishments, but there’s always more to do.
We have maintained strong relationships with the major transportation agencies and elected officials – and our political capital remains at an all-time high. We also provide members with access to top policy makers through our agency cooperatives and at our membership meetings. We continue to provide quality educational and training content to IRTBA members via Road Builder University webinars. We regularly connect with members and transportation stakeholders through our weekly newsletter Friday Facts; it features up-to-date news on issues that matter to the transportation industry in Illinois. With over 40 committees, IRTBA members are provided with a variety of platforms to exchange ideas, pick up information, promote best practices, and network with other industry professionals. Speaking of networking, the IRTBA hosts the very best networking events including the Annual Awards and Dinner in December, General Membership Meetings in May, September and October, the Planning and Design Conference in August, the Annual Golf Outing in September, and the Annual Convention February. And we are always thinking about the next generation through the hugely successful Emerging Leaders Program.
Building today, and planning for the future – that’s what we do. Throughout the year, and every year, IRTBA has remains dedicated to accomplishing the goals set forth in our Strategic Plan. IRTBA works toward accomplishing goals set forth in our Strategic Plan. Five specific areas are highlighted:
- IRTBA will be the successful leader and advocate for stimulating increased funding at all levels for the transportation design and construction industry in Illinois;
- IRTBA will be its members’ indispensable resource for networking, training, education, and business services;
- IRTBA will be the recognized authoritative public voice and credible information source for the transportation design and construction industry in Illinois;
- IRTBA will play an active role in addressing diversity within the industry; and
- IRTBA will be a leader in establishing and implementing sensible and innovative environmental practices.
I want to thank every member for their commitment to keep Illinois moving. The IRTBA will always continue to work for you and for every citizen in our great state. As always, please feel free to reach out to me or the IRTBA staff with any questions or if there is anything we can do to help. I look forward to continuing to work together as the IRTBA strives to accomplish our goals and aid in the recovery of Illinois’ economy as the most effective force for the transportation design and construction industry.
IRTBA Chair 2022-23