Listen to this article here
President Biden released the American Jobs Plan Wednesday afternoon at an event in Pennsylvania, just weeks after signing the $1.9 trillion COVID relief package into law.
The American Jobs Plan calls for historic federal investment to improve infrastructure and expand the green energy industry.
“I’m proposing a plan that rewards work, not just rewards wealth,” Biden said in a speech. “It builds a fairer economy that gives everybody a chance to succeed.”
The $2 trillion plan is ten times larger than the $200 billion proposed in former President Trump’s package that never passed. Over the next eight years, the American Jobs Plan would invest in the areas of transportation, housing, schools, workforce development and more.
Biden called the plan “a once in a generation investment” that would “create the strongest, most resilient and most innovative economy in the world”.
What’s in the American Jobs Plan?
According to a CNN article, roughly $621 billion will be used to directly improve the nation’s transportation system. This includes road and bridge repair, safety enhancements, investments in mass-transit and speeding the production of electric vehicles. The plan also includes $18 billion to restore veterans hospitals and other federal buildings.
Another half trillion dollars would focus on enhancing manufacturing and workforce development across the country. The plan calls for the expansion of high speed internet, building out jobs training programs and investments in green energy and technology manufacturing.
Biden said the plan will make infrastructure “more secure and resilient” in the face of climate change. The emphasis could save the country billions from climate-related damages in the years to come.
The plan provides more than $200 billion for housing development, construction and retrofitting. It also allocates more than $100 billion for repairing and replacing all lead pipes and service lines across the nation. Another $100 billion will go toward building and updating public schools across the country.
Biden’s plan will target investment in historically under-resourced communities and communities of color across the nation. A significant portion of the remaining $180 billion will also focus on ending gender and racial disparities in the STEM industry.
Making the American Jobs Plan a reality
To pay for this hefty bill, Biden wants to close tax loopholes and implement moderate tax increases on large corporations and investor income.
“Wall Street didn’t build this country,” Biden said, underscoring his philosophy behind this funding. “You, the middle class, built this country.”
The President made clear that most Americans will see no tax increases as a result of this plan. “No one… no one making under $400,000 will see their federal taxes go up. Period,” Biden said.
The American Jobs Plan will likely face a difficult road ahead in Congress. In a call with members of the press Wednesday, a senior White House official reemphasized President Biden’s desire for a bi-partisan agreement.
“But,” the official said, “what [the President] is uncompromising on is the urgency of the moment.”
President Biden also indicated he will announce a second plan later this month. The details of his ‘American Families Plan’ will be unveiled in the coming weeks with an expected additional price tag of $1 trillion.
“We can’t delay another minute,” Biden said in his speech Wednesday. “It’s long past due.”
To learn more about the White House’s American Jobs Plan, click here.