The five-year bill calls for significantly increased funding for roads, transit and rail
House Democrats unveiled the latest plan for tackling the nation’s aging infrastructure on Friday, proposing a $547 billion transportation funding bill that seeks to ramp up spending on rail and transit while encouraging states to repair existing roads rather than build new ones. The bill, proposed by members of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, includes $343 billion for road and bridge construction, as well as highway safety — a boost of more than 50 percent over the last transportation bill Congress passed in 2015. It also calls for $109 billion for transit and $95 billion for rail, including a tripling of funding to Amtrak.
Beyond authorizing federal spending, the five-year bill seeks to overhaul rules on how states and other transportation agencies can use the money, putting environmental goals at the forefront and seeking to curb the dominance of car travel. The 1,249-page bill underscores a partisan divide on transportation policy, with both parties at odds on the federal role of supporting transit and the extent to which spending should target climate change.
Rep. Peter A. DeFazio (D-Ore.), chairman of the committee, said the proposal embodies a core piece of President Biden’s infrastructure plans, “seizing this once-in-a-generation opportunity to move our transportation planning out of the 1950s and toward our clean energy future.”