Pa. Dems call $715 billion House infrastructure bill ‘urgent’

Written by on July 2, 2021

Pa. Dems call $715 billion House infrastructure bill ‘urgent’

By Genesis Ortega

July 2, 2021

The U.S. Capitol. Liam James Doyle/NPR

The U.S. House of Representatives passed a $715 billion infrastructure bill on July 1 intended to rebuild roads, bridges, transit, rail, and wastewater and drinking water systems. 

In a press call, Pennsylvania Democrats say they stand behind the legislation. 

Congresswoman Susan Wild (D-Lehigh/Monroe) voted in favor.

“There is no time to waste on this because with every passing day we see the disastrous consequences of delaying further. We urgently need to fix the roads and bridges that we literally see crumbling around the country,” Wild says.

The bill includes $20 million for infrastructure improvements in the Greater Lehigh Valley region. 

“This bill is to help us modernize our roads, our bridges, our rail systems, our water systems, our sewer systems. All of these things that we’ve been disinvesting for an awfully long time,” says U.S. Congressman Matt Cartwright (D-Lackawanna/Wayne/Pike/Luzerne/Monroe).

The bill is also expected to create more jobs. 

Eight of nine Republican representatives from Pennsylvania objected to the legislation calling it overly expensive. 

But U.S. Congressman Brendan Boyle (D-Philadelphia) agrees action is needed now.  

“We can either pay now or pay more later. The cost to repair our roads, fix our bridges, fix our water and sewer systems, that’s not going to get any cheaper the longer we wait,” Boyle says.  

The legislation may serve as a building block in negotiations over a broader bipartisan infrastructure package in Congress later this summer. 

The Associated Press contributed to this story. 

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