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Senate Dems Propose Creating 15 Million Infrastructure Jobs

The plan would invest $1 Trillion to rebuild crumbling roads, bridges, tunnels and strengthen the electrical grid

Kris LaGrange's picture
Mar 08, 2018

After Trump released his much-maligned infrastructure plan, that failed to provide the needed resources to meet the United States infrastructure needs, Senate Democrats have now released their vision for rebuilding America’s roads, bridges, and tunnels.

The Democrats plan would provide $1 Trillion in infrastructure spending, including $140 billion for roads and bridges, $115 billion for water and sewer repairs, and $50 billion to rebuild schools. While much of the money is spent on traditional infrastructure projects $40 billion will be used to expand high-speed internet to rural areas and $80 billion will be used to upgrade our energy grid. Some of that money would go towards funding research, development and demonstration programs for energy storage, advanced grid technologies like micro grids, as well as integrate more renewable energy onto the grid and improving the grid's security.

“This is a bold, comprehensive plan that will create 15 million good paying jobs by reclaiming recent corporate tax giveaways and investing those funds back into our nation’s communities, including in our roads, bridges, transit, schools and water systems,” said AFSCME President Lee Saunders.  “It ensures strong labor protections and puts the public interest first, rather than selling off the nation’s assets to private interests.”

To pay for the ambitious plan, Democrats are proposing reinstating a top income tax rate of 39.65%, restoring the individual alternative minimum tax, reversing cuts to the estate tax and raising corporate income tax rates from 21% to 25%. All of these taxes were cut under Trump’s recent tax plan.

“We believe overwhelmingly the American people will prefer building infrastructure and creating close to 15 million middle-class jobs than giving tax breaks for the wealthy,” said Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY).

The infrastructure plan will also include enhanced Buy America rules, comprehensive labor protection and contracting standards that enforce workers’ rights. Larry Willis of the Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO describes the plan as putting working people at the center of a national infrastructure agenda. “Finally, this plan tackles the severity of our infrastructure crisis by directing substantial funding toward every corner of our vast transportation system, from our dilapidated roads, bridges, and transit systems to our outdated ports, airports, and passenger rail networks,” said Willis. “For too long, we have treated our transportation and broader infrastructure as though it doesn’t matter and working families have paid the price. This proposal turns the tides by ensuring investments made will rebuild our country and put working people first.”

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