On Aug. 10, the Senate passed, 69-30, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, a historic, $1.2 trillion infrastructure package investing in all components of the nation’s physical infrastructure. AGC endorsed this legislation because it reauthorizes the nation’s federal-aid highway and transit programs for five years at record funding levels, includes significant environmental permitting streamlining provisions, and provides a host of other investments for a wide array construction projects without raising taxes on construction firms and without including any new, significant workforce mandates, like the PRO Act or government-mandated project labor agreements. A full AGC analysis of the bill can be found here. Additionally, a breakdown of what’s in the bill for each construction market can be found here:Highway Contractors; Utility Contractors; Direct Federal Contractors; Building Contractors ; and Other Markets (Transit, Rail, Waterways, Airports).
While this measure passed the Senate overwhelmingly, the path forward for this legislation in the House is unclear. President Biden and Senate Democrats have expressed their intention to take a two-track approach to passing “infrastructure” legislation: one through a bipartisan, physical infrastructure bill (roads, bridges, ports, etc.) and the other via a partisan, $3.5T budget reconciliation package to address “human infrastructure” needs (healthcare, childcare, further climate change funding, etc.).
Although Senate Democrats unanimously voted for the bipartisan infrastructure bill, factions of the House Democratic Caucus have explicitly stated they will not vote to pass the physical infrastructure bill until the Senate produces the “human infrastructure” bill. As some moderate Congressional Democrats have expressed concern with the size and scope of the reconciliation package, many House Democrats are wary of passing the bipartisan bill without more work being done on the reconciliation package. Accordingly, AGC CEO Steve Sandherr called on the House to immediately take up the bipartisan infrastructure bill and not hold up needed investment in our nation’s infrastructure for unrelated political reasons.