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Infrastructure framework set, but passage tied to reconciliation

By |  June 25, 2021
Will Congress commit $1 trillion toward infrastructure? Photo: iStock.com/kozmoat98

More than $100 billion of the $953 billion infrastructure package would address roads, bridges and major projects. Photo: iStock.com/kozmoat98

The Biden administration and a bipartisan group of Senators came to an agreement on the framework of an infrastructure bill addressing roads, bridges, airports, public transit, broadband and more.

“We have a deal,” Biden says. “And I think it’s really important – we’ve all agreed – that none of us got what we – all that we wanted. I clearly didn’t get all I wanted. They gave more than, I think, maybe they were inclined to give in the first place.”

The five-year deal is reportedly worth about $953 billion. More than $100 billion would be dedicated to roads, bridges and major projects, with $73 billion for power infrastructure, $66 billion for passenger and freight rail, $65 billion for broadband infrastructure and $55 billion for water infrastructure.

Other areas addressed in the package include public transit ($49 billion) airports ($25 billion) and electric vehicle infrastructure ($7.5 billion).

President Biden, however, made clear Thursday that passage of the bill will not happen without a budget reconciliation package.

“I expect that in the coming months this summer, before the fiscal year is over, that we will have voted on this bill – the infrastructure bill – as well as voted on the budget resolution,” Biden says. “But if only one comes to me – if this is the only thing that comes to me – I’m not signing. It’s in tandem.”

The National Stone, Sand & Gravel Association (NSSGA) welcomed the breakthrough on infrastructure.

“This could be a transformational moment for our nation as it sets the path for robust investments to improve outdated and overused transportation systems and provides sustainable economic opportunities and high-earning jobs for millions of Americans,” says Michael Johnson, president and CEO of NSSGA. “Clearly, more work is needed as Congress must fill in the legislative details and move the proposal through each chamber, including a reauthorization of our surface transportation programs that expire on Sept. 30.”

The Portland Cement Association (PCA) applauded the White House and the bipartisan group of 21 senators for reaching a deal on the infrastructure package.

“PCA has continually advocated for passage of a long-term bipartisan infrastructure package and is encouraged that this plan takes the vital steps needed to provide significant investment in our nation’s infrastructure,” says Sean O’Neill, senior vice president of government affairs at PCA. “PCA encourages both parties in Congress to work towards enacting strong bipartisan infrastructure legislation as outlined in the agreement between the White House and the group of bipartisan Senators.”

Kevin Yanik

About the Author:

Kevin Yanik is the editor-in-chief of Pit & Quarry magazine. Yanik can be reached at 216-706-3724 or kyanik@northcoastmedia.net.

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