America's infrastructure was dealt a win in late October 2021 when Congress passed a $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill as part of the President's Build Back Better plan. This is the first of two proposed bills—one dealing with physical infrastructure, the other with social and human infrastructure—designed to implement Build Back Better by investing in America's roads, bridges, water systems, ports, and human capital. President Biden signed the bill into law, creating numerous opportunities.
What's in the physical infrastructure bill? Below, we discuss a few of the law's main points.
Roads, Bridges, and Railroads
This bill is earmarking funds for the following sectors1:
- $110 billion for roads and bridges
- $66 billion for railroads
- $39 billion for public transit
- $25 billion for airports and air travel
- $17 billion for port infrastructure
These funds may be used both to repair and reinforce existing infrastructure and to study, plan, and build new infrastructure. A recent American Road & Transportation Builders Association analysis revealed that more than 220,000 of America's bridges are in critical need of repair, so these funds are likely to be used quickly.2
Power, Water, and Internet
Another significant chunk of the infrastructure bill focuses on reinforcing America's power and water grids and expanding the availability of broadband internet. The following funds have been set aside:
- $65 billion for the power grid
- $65 billion for broadband internet
- $55 billion for water infrastructure (plus an additional $8 billion for water infrastructure in the western U.S.)
These funds are aimed at combating drought in the West while avoiding future Flint-like issues stemming from lead water supply pipes or insufficiently purified drinking water.
Climate Change and Environmental Issues
A final focus of this bill looks to the future of U.S. infrastructure.
- $47 billion for climate change and cybersecurity
- $21 billion for environmental remediation
- $11 billion for highway, pedestrian, and pipeline safety
- $7.5 billion for electric school buses
- $7.5 billion for electric vehicle (EV) charging stations
These funds may work to make U.S. highways more EV friendly, reducing drivers' reliance on fossil fuels. Meanwhile, the climate change and environmental remediation funds are intended to clean up past environmental spills and disaster areas while taking steps to reduce emissions, decrease plastics, and slow the rate of global warming.
These funds aren't all going to be spent on the federal level. A big part of the infrastructure bill consists of grants to states to spend money within their own borders. The breadth of this infrastructure bill means that there's something for most, whether you're hoping a nearby bridge finally gets those much-needed repairs or you're looking forward to more stations to charge your electric vehicle.
This material was created for educational and informational purposes only.
All information is believed to be from reliable sources; however, LPL Financial makes no representation as to its completeness or accuracy.
This article was prepared by WriterAccess.
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