Mayors meet with lawmakers about transportation funding


The plan calls for spending $126 billion on infrastructure projects. The group identifies the end of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan as the source of the money.

Congress recently passed an extension of surface transportation funding through next spring, and Obama has called for $50 billion in direct spending on infrastructure improvements as part of his $447 billion American Jobs Act he has spent the past few weeks pushing Congress to approve.

Villaraigosa said Tuesday on a conference call with reporters that one of the messages he delivered in his meetings with lawmakers Tuesday was that debates on the jobs bill should be held in the cities, not just around the Beltway. 

Villaraigosa was joined in the meetings Tuesday by Philadelphia Mayor and Conference of Mayors Vice President Michael Nutter (D) and Burnsville, Minn., Mayor and past Conference of Mayors President Elizabeth Kautz (R) as part of a group of about 50 mayors.

The group also met with Sen. Mark BegichMark Peter Begich11 former Democratic senators call for 'meaningful reform to Senate rules' Harry Reid, political pugilist and longtime Senate majority leader, dies Alaska Senate race sees cash surge in final stretch MORE (D-Alaska), who is a former mayor of Anchorage, Alaska. 

The full Conference of Mayors proposal can be read here.