The U.S. Senate voted to approve the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) by a bipartisan vote of 69-30, a bill that represents a historical USD 1 trillion investment in core infrastructure across the country.
“The bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act will modernise and upgrade our roads, bridges, ports, and other key infrastructure assets. In doing so, this landmark piece of legislation will create jobs, increase productivity, and pave the way for decades of economic growth and prosperity – all without raising taxes on everyday Americans or increasing inflation,” the statement from the group of 10 senators says.
The infrastructure package is part of President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework. The Act provides funding for investment projects targeting the road and bridges repairs, the development of transit and rail systems, rolling stock and electric vehicle procurement programmes, broadband deployment, cybersecurity and energy systems.
The legislation includes around USD 550 billion in new federal investment over the next five years in America’s roads and bridges, water infrastructure, resilience, internet, and more, which will enhance country’s competitiveness, create good jobs, and make the economy more sustainable and resilient.
USD 66 billion will support the development of rail passenger and freight system, providing funding for Amtrak network, for new service and dedicated funding to the Northeast Corridor. The increased funding will also support the rail freight sector and rail safety. The legislation positions Amtrak and rail to play a central role in our transportation and economic future. USD 22 billion will be provided as grants to Amtrak, USD 24 billion as federal-state partnership grants for Northeast Corridor modernisation, USD 12 billion for partnership grants for intercity rail service, including high-speed rail, USD 5 billion for rail improvement and safety grants, and USD 3 billion for grade crossing safety improvements.
Under the legislation, USD 39.2 billion will be provided for country’s public transit projects and USD 11 billion will support safety and research programmes. This makes the largest federal investment in public transit ever. The financing will support new investment to modernise transit and improve accessibility for the elderly and people with disabilities. That is in addition to continuing the existing transit programmes for five years as part of surface transport reauthorization. In total, the new investments and reauthorization provide USD 89.9 billion in guaranteed funding for public transit over the next five years.
The airport network will benefit a USD 25 billion funding, while the infrastructure projects for the ports and waterway transport will receive USD 17.4 billion.