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Current Affairs

US House passes infrastructure bill

Date: 10 November 2021 Tags: Miscellaneous

Issue

The US House has approved an infrastructure bill to rebuild roads and bridges, modernize public works systems among many other things.

 

Background

The bill allocated $1 trillion funding and is now going to President Joe Biden for his signature.

 

Details

  • The bill aims to virtually reach every corner of the country. It has been compared to the historic investment made in the transcontinental railroad and Interstate Highway System. 

  • Estimates made by the White house states that the investments could add about 2 million jobs per year over the coming decade.

  • The bill has been approved amidst demands made by liberal democrats to link it to $1.75 trillion social spending bill for getting support of moderate democrats.

  • Among the opposition, thirteen Republicans voted in favour of the bill. This allowed democrats to pass the half way mark despite several defections from their side.

 

Components of the plan

  • The bill will fund $110 billion for repairing the nation’s aging highways, bridges and roads. About $40 billion is exclusively allocated for repairing and constructing bridges.

  • The bill has allocated $39 billion for improving public transport and making them friendlier for disabled people. It will be used for buying zero-emission and low-emission buses.

  • The bill will fund $66 billion to improve the rail service’s 457-mile-long Northeast Corridor as well as other important routes.

  • Electric vehicle charging stations will be set up using $7.5 billion. This will help in reducing carbon emissions and also pollution.

  • Internet service will be improved for rural areas, low-income families and tribal communities by allocating $65 billion for broadband access.

  • The nation’s power grid will be made more resilient by spending $65 billion in modification and improvement.

  • Airport infrastructure such as runways, taxiways, terminals, gates etc would be improved by spending $25 billion.

  • To improve drinking water and waste water infrastructure, $55 billion will be allocated. This will enhance the safety of the nation’s drinking water.