RI roads, bridges to get fixed through $2.5B infrastructure influx

Politics

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Rhode Island is getting a better idea of how the newly passed infrastructure bill will impact the state.

Rhode Island’s congressional delegation joined by Gov. Dan McKee, R.I. Department of Transportation Director Peter Alviti, and Mike Sabitoni in Providence to recognize last week’s passage of the bill.

House lawmakers passed the $1.2 trillion spending bill by a simple majority on Friday. The Senate had previously passed its version.

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal will send more than $2.5 billion of federal tax money to Rhode Island to repair roads and bridges, upgrade public transit and rail systems, tackle the climate crisis, and secure access to clean drinking water.

“Everybody’s going to like the idea that we’re going to be able to travel over bridges that are safe and roads that are in good shape without potholes and things like that so the people of Rhode Island have something to look forward to personally as well as the jobs,” said Governor McKee.

Over the weekend, Congressman David Cicilline said the funding over the next five years would include:

  • $1.5 billion for federal-aid highway apportioned programs
  • $242 million for bridge replacement
  • $272 million for public transportation improvements
  • $6 billion for Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor
  • $23 million to expand the state’s electric vehicle charging network
  • $100 million for broadband coverage
  • $378 million for water infrastructure improvements
  • $2 million for wildfire protection
  • $10.9 million for cyberattack prevention
  • $45 million for airport improvements

Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo applauded the Bipartisan effort and mentioned Rhode Island in her remarks.

“I can tell you prior to this job, I was governor of Rhode Island for six years, and every year, we thought, we were told, an infrastructure bill was around the corner, it’s going to come, governor, the infrastructure money is coming, but of course it never did. And President Biden delivered,” she said.

The bill also includes billions of dollars in funding for climate resilience and electric vehicle infrastructure, which will help accelerate the nation’s transition to a green economy.

The transformational legislation will also create millions of good-paying, union jobs across the country, reduce inflationary economic pressures, and ease supply chain bottlenecks.

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