Washington (AP) – Transportation Secretary Pete Butgig warns that the county’s infrastructure must exceed $ 1 trillion, that other countries, particularly China, are ahead of the United States in public investment, a scenario he describes as “a threat to our The future for the team. “
Boutigig is set to appear before the House of Representatives on Thursday, launching an opening advertisement to sell Congress on President Biden’s infrastructure program. Congress has just passed a $ 1.9 trillion COVID-19 bailout bill, but Boutingig is expected to tell lawmakers that a broader economic recovery will require a national commitment to repair or transform America’s infrastructure.
According to the Associated Press, he called the coming months “the best chance of building the next generation at any time in our lives.”
“Across the country, we are facing trillions of dollars worth of repairs and improvements, as good projects worth hundreds of billions of dollars are already under development,” he said.
Butgig will focus on new investments to tackle climate change.
“Every dollar we spend on reconstruction from a climate disaster is a dollar we could have spent on building a more competitive, modern, resilient transportation system with significantly lower emissions,” Butigig said. “We all live with the damage caused by the displacement of history, the resulting unmet needs that are growing by the day.”
Boutingig was set to appeal to the House Transport and Infrastructure Committee as Biden meets with economic advisers this week on a $ 3 trillion package of infrastructure infrastructure needs. In recent weeks, Boutigig has met with more than two dozen groups – more than 30 members of Congress – according to the agency, to discuss the efforts he is making as an opportunity for “generations”.
But that pace of sales is met with skepticism from Republicans, who are wary of another expensive package that will follow soon after the multimillion-dollar COVID-19 response. For Biden, this is another test of his campaign promise to reach a political corridor in resolving national issues, with some Democrats advocating a one-size-fits-all approach that could keep Republicans out of the process.
The proposal, which remains preliminary, will extend priority legislation to various parts, including the infrastructure component of roads, bridges, railways, electric car charging stations, to boost the mobile network, among other things, to gain Republican support. The goal will be to facilitate the transfer of energy more easily.
The second component includes investing in free community colleges, universal preschool, and paid family vacations, says one person familiar with the options, who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss private conversations.
Still, in a tightly divided Congress, Republicans are already refusing to offer as much as they would like Biden to focus on the environment. Some Democrats have told the administration in particular that they are likely to have to bypass the Republicans, use their narrow party majority in the House and Senate to pass infrastructure programs with budget reconciliation, which requires only a simple majority.
Biden is expected to present details of his economic proposals next week.
“The transportation bill should be a vehicle, not a new Green deal,” said Sam Graves, Missouri’s first Republican member of the House committee, in remarks prepared for Thursday’s hearing, outlining what they could adopt. House Republicans. “This should be about roads and bridges. “The more massive any bill becomes, the more bipartisanship suffers.”
Oregon’s Peter Defaccia, chairman of the House Democratic Committee, says lawmakers need to ask what the country will suffer “for a daily delay.”
“Infrastructure is an integral part of our economy, and its great contribution is the key to our nation’s recovery right now,” Defazio said in a statement.
In 2020, Democratic presidential candidate Butigig, who was mayor of South Bend, Indiana, followed Biden’s call for a bipartisan bill, stressing the need for both economic and racial justice.
He says nearly 40,000 Americans die each year on unsafe or inadequate roads, while millions more lack access to transportation. According to him, the current epidemic has only put more stress on the transport sector, “without action, it will only get worse.”
“We see other countries ahead of us, which could have repercussions for strategic and economic competition,” Butigig said in remarks. “By some means, China spends more on infrastructure every year than the United States and Europe combined. “The status quo of infrastructure is a threat to our collective future.”
“Now is the time to finally address the major inequalities, including the highways built through the S: Brown community, due to decades of investment that has left small towns, rural streets closed, and the disproportionate burden of pollution from trucks, ports and other trucks. facilities, ”he adds.
Last year, the House passed a $ 1.5 trillion public works package, but the Senate rejected it after Republicans criticized it as a “Green New Deal.” The Senate committee approved a much narrower measure, but it failed to move forward.
Butigig says he expects more discussions on the size of the package in the coming weeks և months. Both DeFazio and Delaware Sen. Tom Carper, chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, set goals to pass bills in May.
Associated Press writer osh osh Boak contributed to this report.