DeLaney: Federal infrastructure bill delivers
INDIANAPOLIS – State Representative Ed DeLaney today issued the following statement after the passage of the bipartisan infrastructure bill:
“For years, Indiana Democrats have been calling for increased investments in our communities, but our Republican supermajority has fallen short. I commend Congress for passing legislation that will bring long-overdue investments to secure the economic growth and stability of our state and country. It would be remiss of me not to mention that all Republican members of Indiana's Congressional delegation voted to oppose this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to invest billions in our road, rail, water and broadband networks. The passage of the bill opens up an opportunity for the General Assembly to build on a solid foundation of federal funding. We need to say 'yes' to this bill and take full advantage of it.
“I am asking all members of the Indiana General Assembly to join me in adding to what Washington is providing by leading and by adding additional funds where necessary. By the same token I am calling on the governor to apply for every grant that this law may make available to our citizens. This is a unique opportunity. As a first step, we need to restore cuts made to rail service by the General Assembly and prepare for a dramatic upgrade to our rail lines that will connect Cincinnati and Louisville to our airport. This is a great opportunity that must not be overlooked.
“Congress is getting done what the state has failed to do under supermajority power. I applaud the members of the U.S. Congress that voted to pass investments that will bring nearly $9 billion to our state's economy and provide:
- $8 billion to revitalize the state's deteriorating roads and bridges. 1,111 bridges and 5,478 miles of highway in our state are currently in poor condition.
- $751 million to protect clean drinking water through improved water infrastructure, including the elimination of lead service lines.
- $100 million to support broadband internet expansion. Currently, over 200,000 Hoosiers lack internet connection entirely.
- $680 million to improve public transportation.
- $100 million to build an electric vehicle charging network that will allow convenient options and support long-distance travel. An additional $2.5 billion in grants will be made available to Indiana to support future electric vehicle infrastructure development.
- $20 million to prevent the growing threat of cyber-attacks.
- $20 million to prepare the state from extreme weather events like wildfires and tornadoes. Over the last decade, damage from extreme weather events have cost the state $10 billion.
- $170 million to Indiana airports for infrastructure developments, ensuring our state is an accessible destination and boosting tourism revenues.
“It is time to stop clinging to old policies that have stunted Indiana's economy. The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act provides support to the rapidly changing needs of our state and country. The people of Indiana deserve the better tomorrow this legislation delivers.
“My Republican friends in Congress and in the General Assembly should be embarrassed to attend the many unveilings of the projects provided by this law. They could change that and take pride by supporting wise investment in our future with federal funds AND our own.”