The chairs of three U.S. House committees today released a framework for a five-year, $760 billion infrastructure investment to address some of the nation's most urgent needs, including the massive maintenance backlog, designing safer roads, working toward zero emissions in transportation, and increasing resiliency.
The goal of the plan—dubbed the Moving Forward Framework—put forth by Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chair Peter DeFazio (D-Oregon), Energy and Commerce Committee Chair Frank Pallone (D-New Jersey), and Ways and Means Committee Chair Richard Neal (D-Massachusetts) is to bolster the federal role in order to help communities around the country undertake transformative projects.
Among other things, the framework outlines major investments, including those in surface transportation, rail and transit systems, airports, ports and harbors, wastewater and drinking water infrastructure, brownfields, and broadband.
The three committee chairs are touting the proposed infrastructure investment as "smarter, safer, and made to last," saying the framework would, among other things:
- Bring existing infrastructure into a state of good repair and enable the completion of critical projects through long-term, sustainable funding.
- Set a path toward zero carbon pollution from the transportation sector, creating jobs, protecting natural resources, promoting environmental justice, and increasing resiliency to climate change.
- Ensure a transportation system that is green, affordable, reliable, efficient, and provides access to jobs.
- Prioritize the safety of the traveling public.
- Help combat climate change by creating good-paying jobs in clean energy, investing in energy efficiency and reducing greenhouse gas pollution.
- Support U.S. industries, including steel and manufacturing, through strong Buy America protections.
“Our country has changed dramatically since the 1950s, yet people and goods are now literally stuck trying to move on transportation networks first developed nearly 70 years ago. It’s past time for transformational investments to make our infrastructure smarter, safer, and resilient to climate change, or else we will keep throwing money at an antiquated system that is only holding us and our economy back,” Chair DeFazio said in a statement. “The framework we released today is the launchpad we need to move forward on those transformational investments and curb carbon pollution. In the coming months, I look forward to continuing our work to make this framework a reality. The cost of inaction is too great.”
SOURCE: House Committee on Transportation & Infrastructure