America’s Transportation Infrastructure Act of 2019 was introduced last July. This bill included the reauthorization of previous bills and authorizes $287 billion dollars in spending, spread out over 5 years. This includes funding for various parts of our infrastructure, such as an environmental review of highway projects, safety grant programs, funding for the National Highway Freight program and a significant bridge investment program.
According to the Congressional Budget Office, this bill includes the following provisions:
- Provides $287 billion in contract authority for the Federal-Aid Highway Program between 2021 and 2025.
- Cancels an $8 billion rescission in the Federal-Aid Highway Program that’s currently scheduled for 2020.
- Authorizes $284 billion in obligation limitations for the Federal-Aid Highway Program between 2021 and 2025.
- Authorizes appropriations for additional transportation-related projects and activities.
This bill is also set to provide 20 billion dollars over a 5-year period to invest in our nation’s bridges. While there are many areas of our infrastructure that need attention, bridges are an area of particular concern.
According to an in-depth analysis conducted by the American Road and Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA), over 47, 000 of America’s 616,087 bridges are “structurally deficient” and in poor condition. They found that 38% of our bridges need either repair, replacement or major rehabilitation. Additionally, an alarming one out of every three interstate highway bridges have identifiable repair needs. Many of these may be an eligible project under this bill, which is defined as “a project to replace, rehabilitate, preserve, or protect 1 or more bridges on the National Bridge Inventory under section 144(b). Source
View the full report here.
The bill has not yet passed, but appears to have widespread support including organizations such as the American Association of State Highway and Transportation(AASHTO) , The American Council of Engineering Companies, The Associated General Contractors of America and the American Trucking Association.
While not signed into law, this legislation has the ability to create a great deal of jobs that require compliance with Davis-Bacon and Related Acts. This makes it an important piece of legislation for those within the construction industry to watch in upcoming months.
The material presented here is educational in nature and is not intended to be, nor should be relied upon, as legal or financial advice. Please consult with an attorney or financial professional for advice.