- Ren Gudino
What's Going On with the Infrastructure Bill in 2023?
The American Jobs Plan, also known as the Infrastructure Bill, is a $2 trillion infrastructure plan put forward by the Biden Administration. The plan aims to modernize and upgrade various aspects of the nation's infrastructure, including investments in transportation, water systems, broadband internet access, and more. The plan also includes funding for research and development in areas such as clean energy and manufacturing, improving the infrastructure, creating jobs, and boosting economic growth.
So far, the plan is progressing well. For example, $62.9 billion is going towards the Federal Highway Administration (a $2.3 billion increase from last year) to improve the safety and long-term viability of our highway systems. Additionally, $16.9 billion is going toward the Federal Transit Administration. There is also a total of $2.6 billion for Capital Investment Grants and $542 million for transit infrastructure grants to assist transit agencies in purchasing low- and no-emission buses, improving urban and rural ferry systems, and carrying out local projects.
In short, this bill ensures our infrastructure is in top-notch condition and provides the resources to make it happen. Ultimately, we get better and safer infrastructure and more job opportunities.
The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law is also investing $40 billion to repair and rebuild the bridges. This is the biggest dedicated investment in bridges since the construction of the Eisenhower-era Interstate Highway System! It focuses on not only the top 10 most economically significant bridges in the country but also over 15,000 additional bridges nationwide. The best part is the construction workers dedicated to these projects will be well compensated, thanks to the Davis-Bacon requirements. With approximately 43,000 bridges currently rated in poor condition, we can't afford to wait much longer.
The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) is also investing a significant portion of its funds, $227 billion, towards business tax credits for clean energy production, manufacturing, clean vehicles, and low-carbon energy systems in residential and commercial buildings. To fully realize the potential for job creation and economic development, state and local governments must collaborate. It's not just about building new capacity. There are currently over 930 gigawatts of clean energy and over 420 gigawatts of storage projects waiting for approval to connect to the grid before construction can begin. Utilities will also need to adapt to changing energy inputs and demands.
Recent natural disasters have also highlighted the need for discussions around managing development in flood-prone areas to protect citizens, insurers, and the government from potential risks. From the electrical grid failures caused by winter storms in 2020 to the power failures and road damage from the New England winter storms to the flooding and sewage overflow in the San Francisco Bay, an infrastructure rebuild is proving overdue.