Speaking to Transportation Department employees and flanked by Vice President Joe Biden and Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, Obama said 400,000 jobs of the estimated 3.5 million jobs either created or saved were involved in rebuilding infrastrucuture, updating transit or laying broadband line.
"You have never been more important than you are right now, and for that we are all grateful," Obama told the employees.
Through the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act, "we will be investing $28 billion in our highways, money that every one of our 50 states can start using immediately to put people back to work," Obama said. "I can say that 14 days after I signed our Recovery Act into law, we are seeing shovels hit the ground."
LaHood said work has begun in Maryland on the first project awarded under the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act -- a resurfacing project on Maryland state highway 650, "a very busy road that has not been fully repaired in 17 years." Doing the work is American Infrastructure, a family-owned business in Pennsylvania.