(Office of U.S. Senator Mike Crapo Press Release, August 10, 2021)
Washington, D.C.–U.S. Senator Mike Crapo (R-Idaho) released the following statement after voting in support of the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which the Senate passed by a 69-30 vote:
“The bipartisan legislation we passed today makes investments in traditional, hard infrastructure projects to help keep pace with Idaho’s rapid growth. It includes billions of dollars for Idaho’s roads, highways and bridges; funding for high-speed internet and broadband infrastructure deployment; millions in water infrastructure, including for groundwater storage and conveyance; funding for resiliency against natural disasters like wildfires and droughts; a reauthorization of the Secure Rural Schools program; and more.
“It does not raise taxes. It reprioritizes the use of certain unused COVID-relief funds away from bailouts and idle funds, shifting them toward supply-side investments that will provide benefits to Idahoans for many years. It contains counter-inflationary measures focused primarily on long-term productivity rather than near-term demand. This is especially critical right now, as rising prices impact families and small businesses across America. Republicans were successful in keeping out of this bill changes to states’ Right-to-Work status and increased funding for the Internal Revenue Service.
“This bipartisan investment in our nation’s essential infrastructure needs is far different from the looming debate on my Democrat colleagues’ partisan $3.5 trillion uncontrolled tax-and-spend proposals, and I will continue to fight against this partisan, unnecessary spending.”
The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act includes a number of priorities to benefit Idaho:
- Authorizes $1.9 billion for Idaho to construct, rebuild and maintain its roads and highways.
- Authorizes $213 million for drinking water and wastewater infrastructure in Idaho, and includes funding for Bureau of Reclamation water storage, groundwater and conveyance projects in Idaho that include water storage for the Boise River Project.
- $25 billion nationwide for additional airport improvement projects, such as assistance with expansions, planning, runway rebuilding and improvements, lighting and air navigation facilities.
- $225 million for bridge construction, maintenance and repair in Idaho.
- More than $3.3 billion available for Idaho and other states for wildland firefighting efforts and an additional $5.75 billion nationwide for natural resources infrastructure, including fire management and reduction.
- A three-year reauthorization of the Secure Rural Schools (SRS) program, through Fiscal Year 2023.
- Includes infrastructure planning for small modular reactors and micro reactors. The bill also includes a civil nuclear grant program based on legislation Crapo is working to advance this Congress to provide a comprehensive approach to help empower the long-term viability of our nation’s diverse energy portfolio and further facilitate our nuclear competitiveness.
- $100 million for broadband expansion in Idaho, with extra funding based on maps created by legislation Crapo helped enact, which show where additional broadband is most needed.
- Reduces federal over-regulation by reforming the permitting process to speed construction projects.