Chair of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure Peter DeFazio (D-OR), released text of the Investing in a New Vision for the Environment and Surface Transportation in America (INVEST in America) Act, a key component of the Moving Forward Framework that House Democrats, led by Chair DeFazio, released earlier this year. The bill’s original cosponsors are Subcommittee on Highways and Transit Chair Eleanor Holmes Norton and Subcommittee on Railroads, Pipelines, and Hazardous Materials Chair Dan Lipinski.
The Committee will consider the INVEST in America Act at a Committee markup scheduled for Wednesday 17 June. The current surface transportation authorization expires 30 September.
The INVEST in America Act, which enables the completion of projects through long-term funding authorizes $494 billion over five years to address infrastructure needs, including:
The massive backlog of roads, bridges, and transit systems in need of repair and replacement;
Resilient infrastructure that will withstand the impacts of climate change and extreme weather;
Streets that are safer for all road users, including pedestrians and cyclists;
Prioritizing greenhouse gas emissions reduction, investing in public transit and the national rail network, building out fueling infrastructure for low- and zero-emission vehicles, and deploying technology and innovative materials;
Funding for public transit options in urban, suburban and rural areas in order to integrate technology and increase routes and reliability with tools such as bus-only lanes and priority signaling;
Transformational investments in Amtrak in order to create a robust, reliable rail system and to address long-neglected maintenance needs in the Northeast Corridor and throughout the country while also enhancing rail worker and passenger safety and helping communities address grade crossing issues; and
Improving access to Federal funding.
The INVEST in America Act authorizes a sharp increase in funding to continue current programs in the first year of enactment of the bill (FY 2021) with wider policy implementation occurring in FY 2022.
$319 billion for highways investments. This includes measuring state-by-state greenhouse gas emissions, with incentives for best performers. It also doubles funding for technology deployment to increase innovation and creates new program to fund green materials research and to deploy green construction materials and practices to create smarter, more efficient transportation systems.
$105 billion for transit investments. This increases funding for transit agencies to add new routes and provide more reliable service, encouraging viable public transit options and fewer single-occupant cars clogging highways. It also increases investment in zero-emission buses.
$10 billion for passenger vehicle and commercial motor vehicle safety. This boosts funding for highway safety programs under the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), providing $5.3 billion over five years. It also increases funding for truck and bus safety programs under the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, providing $4.6 billion over five years.
$60 billion for rail. This includes tripling funding for Amtrak to $29 billion over five years, allowing for improvement and expansion of the Nation’s passenger rail network, including the Northeast Corridor (NEC) and the National Network, giving travelers a reliable, low-carbon option to travel both short and long distances, including to regions that lack frequent or affordable airport service.