Statement: With President Biden’s signature, Washington will receive vital infrastructure investments
SEATTLE -- President Joe Biden signed the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act into law Monday. The bill directs historic investments to Washington including:
- $605 million to repair and upgrade roads, bridges, and walkways and bikeways
- Funding to expand clean transportation options in Washington, including $1.79 billion for public transit, $71 million to build a network of electric vehicle charging stations in Washington, and more than $4 billion Washington can apply for in nationwide grants to electrify transit vehicles
- $2.5 billion available in nationwide grants to electrify Washington’s school buses
- $882 million to clean up Washington’s waterways, remove lead pipes, and address lead in schools’ drinking water
- Nationwide, the bill provides $73 billion to strengthen the electrical grid and for energy efficiency and weatherization programs
- $100 million to expand reliable broadband internet access to 241,000 Washingtonians
The legislation also restores a “polluter pays” tax to fund clean-up of toxic waste sites via the Superfund program.
A recent report from WashPIRG Foundation and Environment Washington Research and Policy Center, Trouble in the Air, found that Washingtonians faced several weeks of unhealthy air pollution across the state in 2020. In 2020, WashPIRG Foundation and Environment Washington Research and Policy Center released a report, Blueprint for America, calling for many of the infrastructure investments included in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act.
In response to the bill’s signing, Nicole Walter, WashPIRG Advocate, and Mandy Apa, Conservation Associate with Environment Washington, released the following statements:
Nicole Water, Advocate, WashPIRG
“Outdated infrastructure endangers Washingtonians’ health and our state’s environment. Pipes leach lead into our kids’ drinking water and leak sewage into our waterways. Our transportation system pollutes our air and doesn’t provide enough safe options for Washington residents. The bipartisan infrastructure bill will make greatly needed progress toward solving these problems and leave Washington stronger and healthier than before, and we’re glad to see it signed into law thanks to support from Senators Murray and Cantwell and Representatives Jayapal, Smith, DelBene, Kilmer, Schrier, Strickland and Larsen.”
Mandy Apa, Conservation Associate, Environment Washington
“The infrastructure we build today impacts our health and the environment for decades to come. The bipartisan infrastructure bill begins to rectify the harms of past infrastructure by removing lead pipes and getting lead out of school drinking water; cleaning up toxic Superfund sites; and reconnecting broken up wildlife habitats. It also invests in a livable future with clean electric school buses and an electric vehicle charging network. We thank all of the Washington leaders who supported this bill and put us on a path to a cleaner, greener future."