Get the $579 billion infrastructure program passed today. This is the message that a group business leaders delivered to Congress. A bipartisan group comprising lawmakers from both the White House and Congress has been trying to reach an agreement for several weeks.
On Monday, more than 140 business leaders including Microsoft President Brad Smith and Etsy CEO Joshua Silverman sent a letter to legislators, encouraging them not to ignore infrastructure in their efforts to help America get back on track.
The letter states that “Investment is essential to the economic well-being and workforce of the country’s digital and physical assets.” Mass transit funding should be of concern for urban centres like New York City, where commuters depend on buses, subways and commuter train.
This letter comes from the Partnership for New York City. It is an advocacy group for business that has 330 members. The Partnership for New York City also supports legislation such as the American Rescue Plan.
It is noteworthy that the timing of this letter was chosen, since the latest Senate infrastructure talks failed to meet a crucial deadline Monday after several GOP members rejected plans from Democrats and the White House. This latest impasse centers around transportation funding and spending on water projects. It also discusses how much Covid-19 relief money could be redirected.
The $1.2 trillion infrastructure plan that included billions to fix America’s failing bridges, highways, and ports, eventually collapsed. Now, Congress is trying to reach a compromise of $579 billion before Congress adjourns in August.
Arizona Senator Kyrsten Silena, the lead Democratic negotiator for the bill, was called Tuesday by the White House to meet with Biden in order to continue the discussions. According to reports, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer contemplates whether the Senate will extend its session until the weekend in order for lawmakers to resolve issues.
The business community is becoming more aware of these issues, regardless of political drama. Last week, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce sent its own letter to Congress expressing support for infrastructure deals.
Neil Bradley, chief policy officer and executive vice president of the Chamber writes that “our nation has been waiting over a decade for significant investment and modernization America’s infrastructure.” The bipartisan senators group is close to reaching an agreement. It’s crucial that Republicans and Democrats both keep their promises to each other and see it through.
Publiated at Tue 27 July 2021, 19:46.39 (+0000).