ICYMI: Senator Murray on Senate passage of bipartisan infrastructure bill – MORE HERE
ICYMI: Infrastructure Package Includes Senator Murray’s Digital Equity Act – MORE HERE
ICYMI: Infrastructure Package Includes Senator Murray’s Clean School Bus Act – MORE HERE
ICYMI: Senator Murray on Build Back Better framework – MORE HERE
(Washington, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA), Chair of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee, issued the following statement in response to President Joe Biden signing the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act into law.
“After a Republican administration promised ‘Infrastructure Week’ for years with zero results, Democrats reached across the aisle and actually delivered on infrastructure—and we did it during President Biden’s first year in office. This bill will create millions of good-paying jobs and make the kind of investment America has desperately needed for a long time to build back fairer and stronger. This will be the single largest investment in bridge repair since we built the interstate highway system, and the largest investment in public transit and clean energy transmission in history.
“Washington state families will see a difference directly as more goods get from our ports to store shelves, and people from every part of our state find good-paying jobs to rebuild our infrastructure—from repairing our bridges to replacing lead pipes, and everything in between.
“Over time, communities will see this bill in action as families in the Yakima Valley finally get connected to high-speed internet, as Sound Transit expands light rail options in Puget Sound, as electric vehicle charging stations are built across our state, and so much more.
“This is a huge step forward for Washington state, but as I’ve said time and again: we need both bills, it’s time to roll up our sleeves and get the Build Back Better Act over the finish line. Build Back Better will create millions of more good-paying jobs and lower costs for working families in a big way. Whether by lowering the cost of child care or health care, Washington state families will see Democrats working to put money back in the pockets of regular people by making giant corporations and the very wealthiest pay their fair share.”
Notably, the legislation also includes two of Senator Murray’s bills: TheClean School Bus Act which provides federal grants to help transition the nation’s diesel school buses to zero-emission, electric buses – the bipartisan package will allocate $5 billion towards zero-emission and clean buses, and thanks to Senator Murray, funds will be prioritized for communities where air pollution is greatest; and the Digital Equity Act which will provide $2.75 billion in grants to states and local communities to help close the digital divide and make sure everyone has the tools they need to get online and get connected.
Murray was also a leading voice in securing funding for culverts and habitat restoration to boost salmon recovery efforts in Washington state, funding for ferries, bridge repair, and the strongest possible climate provisions in the bipartisan package. An overview of the overall bipartisan infrastructure bill can be found HERE.
As Chair of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, Senator Murray is leading the Democratic Caucus in shepherding through key priorities in the Build Back Better framework which is currently being negotiated in the Senate. A former preschool teacher, Murray has led the fight for affordable child care and pre-K since she first was elected to the Senate, and the Build Back Better child care and universal pre-K policies were modeled off of her Child Care for Working Families Act. Senator Murray has also led negotiations focused on lowering health care and education costs, strengthening public health infrastructure, expanding home- and community-based services, and been a vocal advocate for bold climate action in the legislation. Murray was also one of the most vocal advocates in the Senate pushing for the inclusion of paid leave, which was successfully included in the House version of the Build Back Better Act.