Associate Manager, Communications and Strategy, U.S. Chamber of Commerce
September 20, 2021
On Monday, September 27th, members of the U.S. House of Representatives will have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to vote for one of the most consequential and ambitious investments in America’s future. The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act will not only provide long-term funding to address America’s crumbling infrastructure but it will also put millions of Americans to work and improve our overall quality of life.
Most Americans are familiar with the ongoing need to repair our roads and bridges or to improve access to broadband across rural America. However, the same cannot be said of much of the other infrastructure upon which our economy and wellbeing rely.
While every state stands to benefit from the bipartisan infrastructure bill, here’s a closer look at some of the lesser-known benefits in seven states.
Florida:Florida’s fifteen seaports account for close to 13% of the state’s GDP and generate roughly 900,000 jobs and $117 billion in economic value. Modernizing and expanding the ports will not only increase the system’s capacity but also its efficiency, reducing wait times and congestion that hurts trade and impacts consumers. The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act will invest upwards of $17 billion in the nation’s ports over the next five years.
Illinois: Illinois is a central hub in American aviation. Last year over 87 million commercial passengers flew through the state. The states’ airports account for upwards of $50 billion in economic output and over 360,000 jobs. Recently, however, freight operators have diverted away from O’Hare International Airport due to congestion. Through the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, Illinois would greatly benefit from the $25 billion increase in airport funding.
Missouri:Missouri’s central location in the continental U.S. has made the state a leader in highway freight tonnage. According to a 2020 study published by the Missouri Chamber of Commerce, the state’s commodity value for highway freight is expected to increase 70% between 2011 and 2030, ultimately accounting for $1.2 trillion in value. The bipartisan infrastructure package would provide $6.5 billion in new highway funding for the state and over $484 million to repair the state’s bridges.
New Jersey: In 2019, 263 million trips were recorded across the New Jersey Transit system, including 87.9 million rail and 24.1 million light rail trips. Funding critical projects like the Gateway Program between New Jersey and New York, will create billions in new economic revenues and improve the efficiency of travel throughout the Northeast corridor. New Jersey is expected to receive over $4.1 billion through the bipartisan infrastructure package to fund critical transportation projects.
Pennsylvania:Pennsylvania’s coal industry fueled American manufacturing innovation since the mid-1700s. Now, however, abandoned mines pose environmental and public health risks to Pennsylvanians. The bipartisan infrastructure package would nearly double the country’s funding for abandoned mine lands reclamation, Pennsylvania would receive upward of $3 billion for this purpose.
Ohio: Ohio is the country’s second-largest state for auto manufacturing, falling just behind Michigan in total vehicle production. According to an analysis by Kelly Blue Book, sales of electrified vehicles (EV) increased 62% for fiscal year 2021. Included in the infrastructure bill is $140 million to expand electric vehicle charging networks throughout the state. Other EV provisions in the bill, such as increased electric battery development spending, will further increase demand for new electric vehicles.
Nevada: In August 2021, federal regulators announced the first-ever water shortage for the American Southwest as the Lake Mead reservoir dropped to its lowest recorded level. To protect businesses, farmers, and ranchers in the state, water infrastructure needs to be modernized to be more efficient. Nevada would benefit from the bipartisan infrastructure package through the investment of over $1 billion in water recycling and reuse projects and $300 million for implementing the Colorado River Basin Drought Contingency Plan.