The House today passed a $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill after months of negotiations and a protracted stalemate between wings of the Democratic Party. The vote was 228-206 with six Democrats voting no and 13 Republicans voting yes.

House progressives had been withholding support for the Senate-passed $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill until a separate bill, estimated to cost $1.75 trillion and that would expand many social programs, was written and passed in the chamber.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Friday night brought the infrastructure bill to the floor for a vote while negotiations remain ongoing on the broader social spending bill.

The infrastructure bill, expected to cost roughly $1.2 trillion with around $550 billion in new spending, would among other things:

  • Reauthorize soon-to-be-expired surface transportation programs for five years;
  • Transfer $90 billion to the Highway Trust Fund, which funds most major highway programs;
  • Provide $28 billion for mass transit programs;
  • Authorize $52.5 billion starting in FY2022, increasing two percent each year for a five-year total of $273.2 billion, for the Highway Trust Fund;
  • Authorize $3.27 billion over five years to the Highway Trust Fund for bridge repairs;
  • Authorize $9.1 billion for tribal transportation programs;
  • Authorize roughly $11 billion for other transportation programs, such as the construction of ferry boats and terminals, retrofitting existing transportation facilities;
  • Authorize $1 billion for walking and biking infrastructure;
  • Allocate $6.4 billion over five years for a new program to reduce transportation-related carbon emissions;
  • Authorize $2.5 billion over five years for electric vehicle charging stations;
  • Codify elements of the Trump administration’s “one federal decision” policy that required transportation-related agencies to coordinate reviews and authorization decisions for major infrastructure projects. Such decisions must be completed within 90 days under this policy;
  • Allocate $50 million to a pilot project to study a national motor vehicle per-mile user fee to fund the Highway Trust Fund;
  • Provide $47.3 billion in supplemental emergency appropriations for highway infrastructure programs, to repair bridges, EV charging infrastructure, and others;
  • Allocate $69.9 billion in contract authority to fund mass transit projects;
  • Authorize $15 billion for rapid and commuter rail, bus rapid transit, and ferries;
  • Allocate $10.3 billion for Transit Infrastructure Grants;
  • Authorize $19.2 billion for Amtrak, including $12.7 billion for National Network grants and $6.5 billion for Northeast Corridor grants;
  • A slew of Amtrak policy changes;
  • Allocate $1.88 billion for FMCSA administrative expenses;
  • Allocate $25 billion for airports;
  • Allocate $14.7 billion for EPA’s efforts to protect drinking water;
  • Authorize $55.4 billion in supplemental emergency appropriations to EPA for addressing lead in water systems, $4 billion to address PFAS chemicals, $5 billion for clean and zero-emission school buses, and others;
  • Allocate $3.5 billion to the Energy Department to develop carbon capture infrastructure;
  • Allocate $42.5 billion for increasing broadband access;
  • Authorize $140 million from FY2022-2028 to create a Cyber Response and Recovery Fund, which would be used to provide grants, technical assistance and other support to federal, state, local, and tribal entities for significant cybersecurity incidents;
  • Authorize $1 billion in grants to help states with cyber capabilities;

The bill includes hundreds of other funds and policy changes, which can be found here.

The infrastructure bill now heads to President Biden for his signature, while the reconciliation bill remains in negotiations. Drafts of the social spending package include a 15 percent corporate minimum tax, a different 15 percent minimum tax on U.S.-based multinational companies’ foreign income, reduce deductions for foreign income of U.S. companies that would yield a 15 percent global intangible low-taxed income (GILTI) rate and a 15.8 percent foreign-derived intangible income tax, a 1% excise tax on corporate stock buybacks, a 5% surtax on adjusted gross income for individuals above $10 million and 3% on AGI above $25 million, a 3.8% tax on active business income for high-income business owners. These tax provisions are expected to raise $1.48 trillion in revenue over 10 years to pay for the spending provisions of the bill.  Importantly, the package does not currently include changes to unrealized capital gains or a plan to require banks to report annual account flows to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

In terms of spending, drafts of the bill would expand Affordable Care Act subsidies through 2025; new eligibility for Medicare recipients to receive hearing benefits; $555 billion for climate related provisions like utility-scale, residential renewable energy and electric vehicle tax credits for 10 years; $105 billion for climate mitigation efforts related to wildfires and droughts; $110 billion for U.S. supply chains to develop and manufacture renewable energy technology; federally funded preschool for three- and four-year-olds, funded for six years; a one-year extension of the child tax credit that was expanded in the most recent reconciliation bill; eligibility for childless workers to receive the earned-income tax credit for an additional year; increased the size of Pell grants; $150 billion for affordable housing including $65 billion to repair public housing, $25 billion for rental assistance, and $15 billion for the Housing Trust Fund; an expansion of free school meals during the school year and a $65-per-child monthly benefit to help low-income families purchase food during the summer; and $100 billion for immigration-related provisions.

The bill has not been reviewed by the Congressional Budget Office to score an official price tag and is not proceeding through regular order in the lawmaking process. House and Senate Democrats are using a process known as budget reconciliation, which comes with certain rules and requires only a simple majority vote for passage. That leaves just two votes that House Democrats could not lose and zero votes Senate Democrats cannot lose if it takes up this bill.

The social spending bill has not been passed by the House or the Senate and would still need to be signed by the President before becoming law.

 

 

Comments are closed.