U.S. President Joe Biden has signed the bill enabling $1,200 billion in infrastructure investments. It is one of the most extensive investment plans in American history. The law will create jobs and boost US competitiveness, the president says.
“Democrats and Republicans can get results together,” the US president emphasized during the signing ceremony on the White House lawn. Along with social reform and climate plan that has not yet been approved, the infrastructure plan is at the heart of Biden’s domestic policy.
The infrastructure plan was approved by the House of Representatives ten days ago after the Senate had already given its approval in August. There were many discussions, especially within Biden’s own Democratic Party, but the plan was eventually approved with the support of 13 Republicans.
The signed law is less ambitious than the original proposal. Still, it remains the most effective public works investment plan since 2009 when Barack Obama was president and one of the largest ever investment plans in U.S. history.
With the plan worth about 1,200 billion dollars (1,000 billion euros), Biden wants to fix the inadequate infrastructure in the US. The money will invest in roads, tens of thousands of bridges, railways, water pipes and schools across the country. For example, the expansion of broadband internet and the modernization of the electricity network are also on the agenda.
Last weekend, Biden appointed Mitch Landrieu as the leader of his infrastructure plan. Landrieu was previously mayor of New Orleans. In that capacity, he played an important role in rebuilding that city after the devastating Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
The signing ceremony on the White House lawn was attended by some 800 union representatives, business leaders, governors and mayors. All Republican lawmakers who voted in favour of the bill were also invited, but only a few attended.