A bipartisan group of U.S. Senators are seeking support from their colleagues and the White House on a tentative infrastructure package they negotiated last week, calling the plan a “realistic, compromise framework to modernize our nation’s infrastructure and energy technologies.” The plan “would be fully paid for and not include tax increases,” the senators added, and on Sunday, Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) detailed three mechanisms for funding the proposal: an infrastructure financing authority; repurposing funding approved by Congress in March for COVID-19 relief; and a provision for electric vehicles for use of roads and bridges.
Collins also stated that the proposal won’t include any gas tax hike or any undoing of Republicans’ signature 2017 tax bill, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. However, the president and many democrats have called for raising the corporate tax rate from 21% to 28% to cover the cost of any infrastructure plan. Additionally, Democrats have pushed for an infrastructure bill to address climate change and include clean energy provisions.
While details of the bipartisan proposal remain unclear, the package is reported to include:
- $1.2 trillion of spending over eight years
- $974 billion spent over the first five years
- The plan calls for $579 billion dollars of new spending.
- The spending will be focused on core, physical infrastructure.
The fate of the bipartisan proposal largely lays in the hands of the president, whose support will be necessary to get Democrats on board with moving forward. U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has also hinted at pursuing a two-pronged approach to infrastructure, potentially allowing for a bipartisan infrastructure deal to pass Congress, while then working to support a budget reconciliation package that would allow a partisan vote on Democrats’ priorities and additional funding on the proposals included in President Biden’s American Jobs Plan and American Families Plan. ABC will continue to provide updates on the development of this and other infrastructure proposals in Congress.