Legislation will provide funding for nationally and regionally significant bridges
Washington, DC – U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Rob Portman (R-OH), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Roger Wicker (R-MS), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Ed Markey (D-MA), Patty Murray (D-WA), and Bob Casey (D-PA) today announced that their bipartisan Bridge Investment Act has been signed into law by President Biden.
The senators have been pushing for this legislation since 2018, and reintroduced the bill in 2019 and again in May of this year. Led by Brown, they successfully included this legislation in the bipartisan infrastructure bill that passed the Senate in August and in the version that passed the House of Representatives earlier this month. The final bill, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, included these provisions and will:
– Establish a competitive grant program to assist with the repair and replacement of deficient and outdated bridges and ease the national bridge repair backlog.
– Provide $12.5 billion in funding to repair bridges across the U.S. The new program will accelerate the delivery of funding to nationally and regionally significant bridge crossings in need of repair.
– Help states, cities and counties finally repair and replace their smaller deficient bridges. The 2020 American Society of Civil Engineers’ Report Card for America’s Infrastructure found there are at least 46,154 bridges in the U.S. that are ‘structurally deficient’ and 231,000 still need repair and preservation work.
“For far too long, the phrase ‘infrastructure week’ was nothing but a cruel joke for communities throughout Oregon and the country needing significant investments to deal with crumbling bridges and roads,” said Senator Wyden, Chair of the Senate Finance Committee. “Today we delivered with the bipartisan infrastructure bill signed into law. And with the Bridge Investment Act included, Oregon will now have the resources it needs to fix our aging bridges to improve safety, create jobs and promote economic growth in our state.”
“Today, alongside President Biden, we’re showing that we can work together to provide real investments to rebuild and upgrade bridges across the U.S. to make them safer and reduce congestion. This will not only create good-paying American jobs but also make our country more competitive,” said Brown, who serves as Chairman on the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee. “Ohio has more than 3,200 bridges that need to be repaired or replaced, but states and cities can’t do it alone. Today, we’re showing we can provide real, bipartisan investments to help us deliver a new Brent Spence Bridge and make travel safer across Ohio.”
“Washington state’s bridges are in desperate need of repair and anyone who has driven anywhere in our state knows this—it’s not complicated, our families and workers deserve safe and secure roads and bridges,” said Senator Murray. “The bipartisan Bridge Investment Act is a huge win for Washington state and will go a long way toward tackling our state’s infrastructure crisis. Finally Washington state communities can count on federal dollars that will improve the daily lives and commutes of millions of people who just want to get to where they need to go.”
A web version of this release is here.