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'Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework' Plan Includes EV Charging Network, Power Line Upgrades

June 25, 2021
A group of bipartisan senators announced an agreement on a framework for an infrastructure proposal.

U.S. President Joe Biden yesterday endorsed the bipartisan infrastructure framework, "the largest long-term investment in our infrastructure and competitiveness in nearly a century," according to a White House statement.

A group of bipartisan senators announced an agreement on a framework for an infrastructure proposal on Wednesday evening. Although 21 senators have signed onto this bipartisan measure, it will need the support of 60 senators to advance to a full vote on the Senate floor, according to a CBS News report. Several Democratic senators have warned that they will not support the bipartisan bill unless they get a firm commitment that issues such as climate change and "human" infrastructure, including child care and health care, will be addressed in a larger reconciliation bill.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said Thursday that he supports the framework, while Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) criticized Biden for "threatening to veto" the bipartisan deal — shortly after endorsing it — if Democrats don't pass his second bill, Politico reported.

The $1.2 trillion Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework makes "transformational and historic investments" in clean transportation infrastructure, clean water infrastructure, universal broadband infrastructure, clean power infrastructure, remediation of legacy pollution, and resilience to the changing climate. Cumulatively across these areas, the Framework invests two-thirds of the resources that the President proposed in his American Jobs Plan, according to the White House statement.

In the energy space, the framework plan will:

  • Build a national network of electric vehicle (EV) chargers along highways and in rural and disadvantaged communities. The largest investment in EV infrastructure in history, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework will accomplish the President’s goal of building 500,000 EV chargers.
  • Electrify thousands of school and transit buses across the country to reduce harmful emissions and drive domestic manufacturing of zero emission vehicles and components.
  • Upgrade our power infrastructure, including by building thousands of miles of new, resilient transmission lines to facilitate the expansion of renewable energy, including through a new Grid Authority. The Plan is the single largest investment in clean energy transmission in American history.
  • Create a first of its kind Infrastructure Financing Authority that will leverage billions of dollars into clean transportation and clean energy.
  • Prepare more of our infrastructure for the impacts of climate change, cyber attacks, and extreme weather events

The plan also includes the goal of connecting "every American" to reliable high-speed internet, just as the federal government made a historic effort to provide electricity to every American nearly 100 years ago. The Framework will also drive down prices for internet service and close the digital divide. This would affect electric utilities as well, since hundreds of publicly owned and cooperatively organized electric utilities are providing high-speed reliable, and affordable broadband services to customers in unserved and underserved locations, according to Sheryl Osiene-Riggs, UTC president. "America's electric utilities are answering the call to assist in this national effort."

The White House statement also lays out the proposed financing sources from the agreement, including reducing the IRS tax gap, repurposing some funds, and state and local investment. 

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