What's in Biden's US$2 trillion infrastructure plan?

The plan would modernise 32,200km of highways and roads. PHOTO: BLOOMBERG

WASHINGTON (REUTERS) - The infrastructure plan US President Joe Biden will roll out in Pittsburgh on Wednesday (March 31) includes US$2.3 trillion (S$3 trillion) in investments aimed at everything from fixing 10,000 bridges to tearing lead pipes out of millions of homes in the United States.

Here are some highlights:

US$650 billion for roads, rail, transport

The plan would modernise 32,200km of highways and roads, the top 10 "economically significant bridges" and 10,000 other bridges.

It includes US$20 billion for road safety programmes to reduce fatalities for cyclists and pedestrians, and US$20 billion to reconnect neighbourhoods divided by highway projects.

It would double federal funding for public transit with a US$85 billion investment and invest US$80 billion in Amtrak, the national railroad service.

The plan includes US$25 billion for airports, US$17 billion for inland waterways, coastal ports and ferries, and investments in cleaning port air pollution.

There is another US$25 billion for "ambitious" transportation projects "too large for current funding programmes". And, in a boost to electronic vehicle makers, a US$174 billion investment to "win the EV market" by spurring domestic supply chains and giving consumers rebates to buy them.

US$650 billion for 'home infrastructure'

These funds would go to broadband, clean water, the electric grid, and high-quality housing.

Among other things, it would replace 100 per cent of the water-bearing lead pipes and service lines across the country, which the White House says serve as many as 10 million families.

It also proposes broadband access for some 35 per cent of rural Americans who do not have the service, building or retrofitting two million housing units, and veterans hospitals.

There is US$100 billion to "upgrade and build new public schools, through US$50 billion in direct grants and an additional US$50 billion leveraged through bonds". The proposal includes capping and sealing oil and gas wells and abandoned mines, which the White House says will create"hundreds of thousands" of jobs in area where oil and mining employment has dried up.

US$400 billion for the 'care economy'

One in six essential care workers live in poverty, the White House said.

The plan will fund home or community-based care for hundreds of thousands of senior citizens and people with disabilities, creating "well-paying caregiving jobs with benefits".

US$580 billion for manufacturing, training, research

The figure includes a US$50 billion investment in domestic semiconductor manufacturing, US$180 billion in research and development with a focus on clean energy, and unspecified amounts as incentives for companies to create new jobs in coal communities and grow the US supply chain.

Raise corporate taxes to foot the bill

The plan would make multiple changes to US tax rules, to put the cost of the plan entirely on companies.

These include raising the US corporate tax rate to 28 per cent from the 21 per cent levy set by the Trump administration's 2017 tax Bill, eliminating all fossil fuel industry subsidies and loopholes, and establishing a minimum tax on income companies use to report profits to investors.

The reforms will add 0.5 per cent to US GDP per year in corporate revenue, which the White House says will fully pay for investments within the next 15 years, and reduce the government deficit after that.

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