Transportation leaders are praising President Biden’s newly announced infrastructure plan as a win for the transportation industry. Leaders within the industry say that the plan would bring unprecedented change to the industry and have a lasting impact on the nation.
The $2 trillion legislation called the American Jobs Plan is part of Biden’s “Build Back Better” plan to repair and restructure the nation. As one-part of his proposal to help the economy recover, the plan specifically allocates $621M for upgrading and modernizing infrastructure from bridges to trains to airports.
The plan was announced last week, March 31, during a press conference in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania after weeks of speculation.
A significant aspect of his push for infrastructure repair is the need for cleaner transportation. In his plan, Biden specifically detailed $174 billion for electric vehicles. The all-encompassing investment push specified funding for everything from charging infrastructure to battery supply production to tax incentives.
According to Janette Sadik-Khan, chair of the National Association of City Transportation Officials, in a CNN article by Matt McFarland, “President Biden’s plan is the most visionary proposal for the nation’s transportation network since the dawn of the Interstate Highway System.”
This new infrastructure plan comes at an opportune time. The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) recently graded the nation’s infrastructure at a “C-“, a slight improvement from the previous score of “D.”
However, the plan also has its critics, according to that same article from CNN, “The Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank, cautioned that the 28% corporate tax rate proposed to fund the plan could dissuade investment, and called the tax hike to fund the plan the largest in five decades.”
The plan could help address the nation’s debilitating and failing infrastructure; however, it still needs to go through Congress. It comes just weeks after the narrow passing of the American Rescue Plan, which also included some funding for the transportation industry.