WASHINGTON DC – U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito (RW.Va.), a senior member of the Senate Committee on the Environment and Public Works (EPW), today joined President Joe Biden in the White House as he signed the Law on investment in infrastructure and employment, which the Senate passed this summer and the House passed earlier this month. Senator Capito released the statement below following the event:
“The Law on investment in infrastructure and employment reflects our commitment to keeping Americans safe, improving our global competitiveness, and growing our economy. It also includes some important victories that will benefit West Virginia. This bill will improve roads and bridges; tackle aging water and wastewater systems; support our airports and ports; and connect rural America to broadband infrastructure to finally bridge the digital divide. As a ranking member of the EPW committee, I am especially proud that the Surface Transportation Reauthorization Bill and the Water and Wastewater Infrastructure Bill of my committee are the basis of this set. I was proud to witness the enactment of this important law, which marks the culmination of a process that began months ago during my negotiations with President Biden. This historic, bipartisan legislation will deliver transformative victories for West Virginia and the rest of the nation for decades to come. “
the Law on investment in infrastructure and employment is built around two critical infrastructure bills developed by the EPW committee — the Surface Transportation Reauthorization Act, 2021 (STRA), which was adopted unanimously by the committee, as well as the Drinking water and sanitation infrastructure law 2021 (DWWIA 2021), which passed the EPW committee unanimously and the Senate 89-2. Senator Capito began negotiations with President Biden earlier this year, which led to the latest bipartisan infrastructure package that has finally enacted today. She also served as the Republican floor official during the Senate debate process.
Click on here for Senator Capito’s statement following his passage in the Senate, and click on here for a page on how the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act will benefit West Virginia.
HOW WEST VIRGINIA WILL BENEFIT:
- Includes the EPW-passed surface transport legislation which provides $ 303.5 billion over five years for federal highway programs, which represents an increase of 35% compared to the current law. For West Virginia, the state will receive $ 3.013 billion in Highway Formula funding over five years.
- Ensures 90% of EPW Bill funding is distributed on a formula basis, giving States a great need certainty plan and execute road and bridge projects.
- Includes $ 40 billion in dedicated bridge resources, the largest investment in bridge infrastructure since the construction of the interstate system. Of the portion of that funding that is distributed on a formula basis, West Virginia will receive $ 506 million over five years specifically for bridge infrastructure.
- Create a new $ 2 billion Subsidy program for surface transport in rural areas which will devote resources to Appalachian Development Road Network (ADHS) and other critical projects across rural America. In addition to this funding, West Virginia will receive $ 195 million, which will be used to help complete projects like Corridor H.
- Includes numerous provisions to expedite delivery of critical surface transportation projects.
- Codifies A federal decision for highway and bridge projects, which sets a two-year target to complete the environmental review and licensing process for large projects and requires agencies to coordinate on a common, predictable schedule.
- Includes the text of the Water infrastructure legislation adopted by the EPW and the Senate. Combined with the additional funding, the overall program includes a total of $ 48.4 billion for water and wastewater infrastructure. This package represents the largest investment in drinking water in the history of our country.
- Invests in innovative technologies and provides assistance to marginalized communities.
- Provides flexibility so that rural and urban areas can better meet their needs.
- Includes a great infusion in the State Revolving Fund for Drinking Water and Drinking Water (SRF), from which West Virginia will benefit. Specifically, the bill authorizes $ 143,104,000 over five years of SRF funds for drinking water and $ 223,230,000 over five years of SRF funds for West Virginia.
- Includes dedicated funding for remediation of lead pipes and cleaning of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS).
- Provides initial funding of at least $ 100 million for broadband deployment in addition to formula-based funding for West Virginia. The unserved and underserved areas of West Virginia would be on the first and second line, respectively, and then receive formula-based funding, through the US Department of Commerce.
- Provides funding dedicated to rural areas through the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) ReConnect program, which Senator Capito helped create and secure funds in the Fiscal Year 2018, 2019 and 2020 budgets as leader of the Appropriations Committee.
- Stimulates investment in rural broadband projects by enabling state and local governments to issue tax-exempt bonds to finance public-private rural broadband projects. The package also allows the federal government to assist state and local governments in the payment of obligations, a provision based on legislation previously drafted by Senator Capito.
- Ensures tariff transparency for consumers by directing the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to take action to ensure that providers label prices and subscription rates in a clear and understandable manner.
- Invests $ 2.48 billion at major airports every year for five years, which includes Charleston, Huntington, Lewisburg and Clarksburg.
- Invests $ 20 million in airports participating in the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Contract Tower program, which includes Wheeling Ohio County, Morgantown, Parkersburg / Wood County and Greenbrier Valley.
- Invest $ 500 million in general aviation and commercial services at non-major airports.
- Investing $ 500 million in non-core and non-core airports, through the Terminal program.
- Authorize again the Abandoned mining land program (AML) and providing billions of dollars to clean up abandoned mine sites.
- Authorizes funding for a new program for cleaning up orphan oil and gas wells.
- Stimulates carbon capture infrastructure by investing in the development of carbon capture and use and storage (CCUS) infrastructure as a critical means of reducing carbon emissions while creating regional economic opportunities and jobs.
- Strengthens the national supply of critical minerals by continuing to research and develop critical mineral innovations with the goal of reducing our dependence on countries like China for these resources.
- Provides an essential critical mineral allow reform on federal lands and put in place policies that not only improve efficiency, but also put America’s economic and national security interests first.
- Provides significant funding to the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) for meet the water resources needs of our country.
- Provides $ 2.5 billion to USACE projects to improve the inland waterway system.
- Provides $ 200 million for aid to environmental infrastructure authorities under USACE, including the three West Virginia authorities that support water and wastewater improvement projects.
- Understands the language that Senator Capito wrote to re-authorize the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC).
- Provides $ 1 billion to the CRA for economic and community development activities in the Appalachians, including broadband deployment.
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