Rep. Castor Votes To Pass Transformational Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill
Washington, November 6, 2021
U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor (FL14), Chair of the Select Committee on the Climate Crisis, released the following statement as the House of Representatives voted to pass the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act:
“With today’s vote, the House of Representatives has delivered a historic investment in America’s infrastructure,” said Rep. Castor. “Our Tampa Bay neighbors deserve modern and safe infrastructure, especially major investments in transit. Rebuilding our infrastructure is especially important to Florida, where 408 bridges and over 3,564 miles of highway are in poor condition. Since 2011, commute times have increased by 11.6 percent in Florida and on average, each driver pays $425 per year in costs due to driving on roads in need of repair. We are also long overdue for major, climate-forward investments in our public transit systems to ensure that all of our neighbors are able to travel safely and efficiently. To protect what makes the Sunshine State special and grow good-paying jobs in Tampa, we are strengthening the investments that support our economy and build more resilient infrastructure.
“With $25 billion allocated for American airports and air traffic controllers, this legislation could help replace the Tampa International Airport air traffic control tower, which is welcome news. The air traffic controllers at TPA are critical to the safety and efficiency of those who travel through our amazing airport and replacing this tower – one of the oldest in the country – will protect travelers and TPA employees.
“We are also making the largest investment in clean drinking water and wastewater infrastructure in American history. We must protect Tampa Bay and Gulf communities from sewage spills and contaminated runoff pollution. This bipartisan package will help modernize our local wastewater systems to keep our water clean and safe. Plus Democrats championed replacement of all of the nation’s lead pipes and service lines – an important way to improve public health and create jobs.
“This bipartisan bill makes progress on recommendations in our Climate Crisis Action Plan and takes steps to strengthen the grid, support electric vehicles, advance environmental justice, and prepare communities for costly weather disasters.
“As this year’s relentless climate disasters have proven, we are in a ‘code red’ moment that requires us to act urgently and ambitiously to solve the climate crisis. That’s why this bipartisan bill is matched with the critical investments in the Build Back Better Act, which will unleash America’s clean energy economy and protect vulnerable Americans who are suffering the consequences of inaction.
“This is it – this is our moment. We have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to deliver on President Biden’s agenda to create millions of good-paying union jobs, to build resilience across America, and to protect future generations from the growing costs and risks of the climate crisis. Inaction is not an option. I’m ready to keep up the fight to help President Biden deliver this vision – for my daughters, for our economy, and for generations to come.”
This bipartisan package will help the state of Florida Build Back Better by: