We have been long focused on what is going on in the country. We are living life with a new normal. However, every day feels like a new abnormal. Despite all the worry, concern, fighting, and downright coping with the situation we are in during this pandemic, there is one thing of which we can be certain; this too shall pass. Maybe like a kidney stone, but it will pass.
COVID-19’s tentacles have wrapped themselves around every life and every part of our American economy. Agriculture is not immune to these effects, even though it is considered an “essential service”. The road to recovery for the economy is going to be a long one. What is it going to take to get the economy as a whole, not to mention the agriculture sector in particular, back on track?
Mike Steenhoek is the Executive Director of the Soy Transportation Coalition. He says upgrading infrastructure will be the key to a quick rebound in the economy.
It may seem like improving the infrastructure would be another large expense. Steenhoek argues that the real expense is the cost of doing business with an inadequate system falling into disrepair. This is especially true in rural America.
Steenhoek says that improvements to rural roads and bridges are an excellent place to start.
Not only are roads and bridges in need of upgrades. The nation’s waterways are in serious need of improvements to the lock and dam systems that keep goods moving down the river systems in this country.
Before the COVID-19 outbreak, Congress was going to consider the Water Resources Development Act. Steenhoek is still hopeful it can happen before the end of the year.
The government is going to have a heavy price tag at the end of this pandemic. It is another heavy price tag to upgrade the infrastructure of this country. However, getting our goods more efficiently to markets both foreign and domestic can go a long way to getting America back to work.