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Breaking Down the American Jobs Plan

President Biden outlined a $2 trillion jobs and infrastructure plan on Wednesday, March 31, that would make a significant investment in roads, bridges, telecommunications, and climate change. The American Jobs Plan includes many Chamber priorities including workforce development, a responsible approach to a clean energy transition, and research and development funding.

However, the proposed tax increases would be counter-productive to economic recovery and competitiveness. The Chamber views this bill as a starting point for negotiations and recognizes that transformative infrastructure investment requires bipartisan consensus. In response to President Biden’s plan, Detroit Regional Chamber President and Chief Executive Officer Sandy K. Baruah released this statement.

Michigan and the United States need significant modernization for our aging infrastructure, and the Detroit Regional Chamber supports a generational infrastructure investment and applauds President Biden’s leadership in presenting an overdue infrastructure package to Congress. Modern physical and connective infrastructure is critical national competitiveness imperative.

There will be a cost to building the 21st century infrastructure system America needs, and neither party in Washington has demonstrated adequate concern for the exploding national debt. Therefore, serious consideration for how we pay for this investment is required. The Detroit Regional Chamber offers the following principles as this proposal is debated:

  • Placing the costs of this historic investment exclusively on the back of businesses – that just recently had their tax rates reduced from among the highest in the industrialized world – would cause job losses and create a less competitive American economy.
  • Spreading costs over more economic sectors, and exploring additional financing mechanisms, such as bonding, should be considered.
  • The overall size of the proposal can be reduced to focus on the types of investments that will drive the greatest long-term economic impact.

Addressing our state and national infrastructure challenges is a bi-partisan priority. This is an opportunity for Washington to demonstrate to their fellow Americans that they can work together to achieve a bold path forward that also addresses the very real concerns about cost.

The Chamber will continue to be engaged on this issue and hopes to be able to support the final package once developed.”

The Chamber outlines what is in the proposal below.

Public Infrastructure

  •  $115 billion to revamp highways, roads, and bridges. The plan outlined 10 major and 10,000 smaller bridges in need of reconstruction.
  • There is $20 billion in the plan to improve road safety, including measures for cyclists and pedestrians.
  • The plan calls for $85 billion to modernize existing transit systems and help agencies expand to meet rider demand. This would double federal funding for public transportation.
  • The plan would invest $111 billion for clean drinking water, $45 billion of which would be used to replace the country’s lead pipes and service lines. The effort would reduce lead exposure in 400,000 schools and child-care facilities and improve the safety of drinking water.
  • The plan includes a $25 billion in airports, that would renovate terminals and expand car-free access to air travel.
  • Finally, there is $17 billion proposed for inland waterways, coastal ports, land ports of entry and ferries.
  • $80 billion to fix Amtrak’s repair backlog.

Electrifying Transportation

  • The plan provides $174 billion in grant and incentive programs for state and local governments and the private sector to build a national network of 500,000 electric-vehicle chargers by 2030.
  • The proposal would electrify 20% of the country’s yellow school bus fleet and help electrify 50,000 transit vehicles that are currently diesel powered.

Infrastructure for the Home and Local Community

  • The plan would provide for universal broadband, including to more than 35 percent of rural Americans who lack access to high-speed Internet.
  • Biden’s proposal would invest $213 billion to build and retrofit more than 2 million homes. The plan would build and rehabilitate more than 500,000 homes for low- and middle-income home buyers and invest $40 billion to improve public housing.
  • The plan includes $100 billion to upgrade and build new public schools, $12 billion in community college infrastructure, and $25 billion to upgrade child-care facilities.
  • $18 billion to modernize Department of Veterans Affairs hospitals and clinics and $10 billion to revamp federal buildings.

Worker Training and climate resiliency research and development

  • $180 billion for research and development that focuses on reducing emissions, climate resilience and boosting climate-focused research.
  • The plan would invest $50 billion in domestic semiconductor manufacturing.
  • The plan creates incentives for companies to locate local manufacturing jobs in the “industrial heartland.”
  • The plan would double the number of registered apprenticeships to more than 1 million and invest in a more inclusive science and technology workforce.

Next Steps

This proposal is only the start of a long process to pass a meaningful infrastructure package. Over the coming months, the Chamber will continue to provide insight on what the bill means for Michigan businesses and residents.