August 6, 2021

U.S. Senate Introduces Bi-Partisan Infrastructure Legislation; Massive Spending Bill Likely to Become Law

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On August 2, 2021, the Senate Energy and Public Works Committee unveiled the legislative text of the “Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act of 2021,” or “IIJA.” The legislation is the result of months of negotiations between the Administration of President Joe Biden and U.S. Senators from both the Democratic and Republican parties. The bill passed several administrative hurdles in the Senate and is likely to pass that body this week. The U.S. House of Representatives is currently in recess, but may come back into session in order to send the bill to President Biden for enactment before the end of August.

The IIJA is built in part on the Surface Transportation Reauthorization Act of 2021, which was passed by the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee in May. That legislation provided over $300 billion in funding for roads and bridges. In addition, the IIJA proposes to spend money on various other infrastructure priorities, including:

  • $73 billion for electric grid rebuilding and resilience, including renewable energy production
  • $65 billion for expansion of access to broadband
  • $55 billion to upgrade water infrastructure
  • $39 billion for public transit
  • $25 billion for airports
  • $21 billion for Superfund and brownfield clean-up and to reclaim abandoned mines and wells
  • $17 billion for port infrastructure
  • $7.5 billion for zero- and low-emission buses and ferries
  • $7.5 billion to build a nationwide network of plug-in electric vehicle chargers

The spending provided for by the bill will take the form of both federal grants as well as through direct federal spending. In some cases, the legislation will also provide for expedited environmental reviews in order to facilitate construction.

Provided it becomes law, the IIJA will represent one of the largest infrastructure spending programs in American history and will create opportunities for those looking to create or expand services involving ports, waterways, electricity, broadband, utilities, roads, transportation services, and more.

Jordan Ramis will continue to provide updates on this legislation as it moves through the process. If we can help you better understand how the IIJA will impact or create opportunities for your business, please do not hesitate to contact one of our attorneys.

Gregory Zerzan is a Jordan Ramis PC attorney with legislative, regulatory, and cabinet agency experience who advises clients through their interactions with Congress and federal agencies. Contact him at greg.zerzan@jordanramis.com or (503)-598-7070.

Tags: Governmental Services, Local Governments and Special Districts


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