Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework Reached

President Biden and a bipartisan group of senators have announced a deal on infrastructure spending. The agreement focuses on investments in roads, bridges, railways and broadband internet, but it does not include investments Biden has referred to as “human infrastructure,” including money allocated for child care and tax credits for families.

According to the White House, the price tag comes in at $1.2 trillion over eight years, with $579 billion in new spending. How the measure would be paid for was a central point in negotiations, with Republicans opposed to undoing any of the 2017 tax cuts. Other sources peg the legislation as a $973- or $953-billion package.

The White House said the plan will be paid for with unused coronavirus relief funds, unused unemployment insurance and sales from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, among other measures.

“The challenge now is to make sure the rest of our caucus on the Democratic side and the Republican caucus know what’s in this bill and can join us on supporting it,” said Sen. Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), who acknowledged the challenge ahead.

“It’s important to recognize that when we say a bipartisan bill … that signal that it sends to the country. Again that we actually can work. That we actually can perform. That we can do something not for Republicans or Democrats but for Americans,” Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska). 

Here’s a look at what’s included in the agreement, according to the White House fact sheet:

Transportation: $312 billion

  • Roads, bridges, major projects: $109 billion
  • Safety: $11 billion
  • Public transit: $49 billion
  • Passenger and freight rail: $66 billion
  • Electric vehicles: $7.5 billion
  • Electric buses/transit: $7.5 billion
  • Reconnecting communities: $1 billion
  • Airports: $25 billion
  • Ports and waterways: $16 billion
  • Infrastructure financing: $20 billion

Other infrastructure: $266 billion

  • Water: $55 billion
  • Broadband: $65 billion
  • Environmental remediation: $21 billion
  • Power, including grid authority: $73 billion
  • Western water storage: $5 billion
  • Resilience: $47 billion

The National Stone, Sand & Gravel Association (NSSGA) President and CEO Michael Johnson issued the following statement regarding the bipartisan deal.

“NSSGA welcomes today’s news that a bipartisan group of Senators and the Biden administration reached a critical breakthrough and agreed to a bipartisan infrastructure framework that will add close to $600 billion in new funding. 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.

“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 September 30.

“NSSGA and our partners across the industry have been rallying for Congress to tackle our infrastructure challenges through a bipartisan consensus for years. We welcome today’s news as it puts us closer to achieving our shared goal. However, we will not let up on our advocacy until the President’s signature is affixed to the final bill.”

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce lauded the agreement.

“Our nation’s economic strength and long-term competitiveness depend on a robust and modern infrastructure,” said U.S. Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Suzanne Clark. “We applaud the White House and G21 group of senators for agreeing on a framework to invest in critical, physical infrastructure. We will continue to work with all members of Congress to get this bill passed and signed into law.”

Portland Cement Association (PCA) Senior Vice President of Government Affairs, Sean O’Neill said, “PCA, representing America’s cement manufacturers, applauds the White House and the bipartisan group of 21 senators for reaching a deal on a $953 billion infrastructure package. America’s economic vitality depends on an integrated, national transportation network that moves goods and people safely and efficiently, while ensuring quality of life and economic prosperity for all citizens. 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. 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.”

“Equipment manufacturers applaud the steadfast leadership provided by President Biden, the G21 group of senators, and others closely involved in crafting the current bipartisan infrastructure framework,” said Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) Senior Vice President of Government and Industry Relations Kip Eideberg. “AEM and the 2.8 million men and women of this industry have long called for a transformative investment in our nation’s physical infrastructure so they can continue to build, feed, and power the world, and are pleased to see such important progress being announced today. However, the job is not done. Despite what skeptics say, we can and must get this deal all the way across the finish line in a bipartisan manner. Equipment manufacturers urge lawmakers, staff, stakeholders, and the American public to remain positive and focused on getting this generational bill passed and signed into law.”

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