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May 12, 2009 - ASCE Letter - H.R. 2187, the 21st Century Green High-Performing Public School Facilities Act

May 12, 2009

The Honorable Ben Chandler
U.S. House of Representatives
1504 Longworth House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515

Dear Congressman Chandler:

I am writing on behalf of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) to thank you for your leadership and the introduction of H.R. 2187, the 21st Century Green High-Performing Public School Facilities Act.

America’s school buildings are in desperate need of repair. ASCE’s 2009 Report Card for America’s Infrastructure graded the nation’s schools a D. ASCE found that spending on the nation’s school facilities is trending down and that $322 billion is needed to bring the nation’s schools into good repair.

The design, construction, and renovation of green, high-performing schools not only improves the learning environment for students, thereby enhancing their performance; they create jobs. Green, high-performing schools promote healthy, high-achieving students who will become future advocates for green living, as this generation learns the importance of building for a sustainable future. School districts see direct benefits accrue at a level of four times the upfront cost of green improvements due to energy savings and other cost mechanisms.

Schools are an investment in our collective future, ensuring that tomorrow’s leaders are prepared to meet the significant challenges our nation will face. As we work to steer our economy out of decline and toward a vibrant future, it is critical that we grasp this opportunity to ensure high-quality learning environments for our children.

Once again, that you for you leadership on this important issue. If ASCE can be of any assistance, please to not hesitate to contact Martin Hight, ASCE’s Senior Manager, Government Relations at 202-789-7843 or mhight@asce.org.

Sincerely,

D. Wayne Klotz, P.E., D.WRE, F.ASCE
ASCE President