House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chair Peter DeFazio said that Democrats will have a ‘plan B’ to ensure that highway and transit authorization programs do not lapse today if lawmakers fail to pass the infrastructure bill.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) reaffirmed her plan to bring the bipartisan infrastructure bill, known as the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, to the House floor today. The IIJA contains a reauthorization of surface transportation law, which also is set to expire today.
Speaker Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) continued to meet with President Biden up until yesterday afternoon as they seek to hammer out a deal within their own party. Progressives continue to say that House Speaker Pelosi won’t have enough votes to bring H.R. 3684 to the floor. Progressives continue to say that they will vote against the infrastructure bill if it comes to the floor before both chambers pass their larger package of social spending priorities.
NATSO continues to urge lawmakers to support the IIJA because it lays the groundwork for private sector investment in the future of transportation energy. The IIJA sends a clear policy signal that the federal government wants to work with private industry to achieve its shared goal of improving the environmental characteristics of the transportation sector.
The Senate is expected to vote this morning on a Continuing Resolution that would keep the government running until Dec. 3.
The Senate initially passed the IIJA on August 10. NATSO praised the measure for aiding the development of a competitive market for alternative fuels, including EV infrastructure, by taking a technology neutral approach to alternative fuels so that there is competition among those technologies on price and reliability; prioritizing private investment so that consumers pay competitive prices rather than socializing costs among all consumers – even those who don’t have or can’t afford electric and alternative fuel vehicles; and requiring state public utility commissions to use their positions to find ways to attract private investment to electric vehicle charging, which should lead them to reduce anticompetitive and punitive demand charges.
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