Administration lays out proposals specific to NC, as Biden pushes infrastructure plan

President Joe Biden's $2T "American Jobs Plan" now has more specifics to it.

On Monday, the Biden administration on rolled out a state-by-state guide to infrastructure needs on everything from transportation to utilities, housing, education, broadband and everything in between.

Here's what's specific to North Carolina:

Roads and bridges
In North Carolina there are 1,460 bridges and over 3,116 miles of highway in poor condition. Since 2011, commute times have increased by 10.7% in North Carolina and on average, each driver pays $500 per year in costs due to driving on roads in need of repair.

The American Jobs Plan will devote more than $600 billion to transform our nations' transportation infrastructure and make it more resilient, including $115 billion repairing roads and bridges.

Public Transportation
North Carolinians who take public transportation spend an extra 59.9% of their time commuting and non-White households are 3.4 times more likely to commute via public transportation. Fifteen percent of trains and other transit vehicles in the state are past useful life. The American

The Jobs Plan will modernize public transit with an $85 billion investment.

Resilient infrastructure
From 2010 to 2020, North Carolina has experienced 42 extreme weather events, costing the state up to $50 billion in damages. The President is calling for $50 billion to improve the resiliency of our infrastructure and support communities' recovery from disaster.

Drinking water
Over the next 20 years, North Carolina's drinking water infrastructure will require $16.8 billion in additional funding. The American Jobs Plan includes a $111 billion investment to ensure clean, safe drinking water is a right in all communities.

Housing

In part due to a lack of available and affordable housing, 632,000 renters in North Carolina are rent burdened, meaning they spend more than 30% of their income on rent. The President proposes investing over $200 billion to increase housing supply and address the affordable housing crisis.

Broadband
6.5% of North Carolinians live in areas where, by one definition, there is no broadband infrastructure that provides minimally acceptable speeds. And 56.3% of North Carolinians live in areas where there is only one such internet provider. Even where infrastructure is available, broadband may be too expensive to be within reach. 14% of North Carolina households do not have an internet subscription.
The American Jobs Plan will invest $100 billion to bring universal, reliable, high-speed, and affordable coverage to every family in America.

Caregiving
Across the country, hundreds of thousands of older adults and people with disabilities are in need of home and community-based services. The President's plan will invest $400 billion to help more people access care and improve the quality of caregiving jobs.

Child Care
In North Carolina, there is an estimated $660 million gap in what schools need to do maintenance and make improvements and 44% of residents live in a childcare desert. The American Jobs Plan will modernize our nation's schools and early learning facilities and build new ones in neighborhoods across North Carolina and the country.

Manufacturing
Manufacturers account for more than 18% of total output in North Carolina, employing 473,000 workers, or 10.4% of the state's workforce. The American Job's Plan will invest $300 billion to retool and revitalize American manufacturers, including providing incentives for manufacturers to invest in innovative energy projects.

Home Energy
In North Carolina, an average low-income family spends 8-10% of their income on home energy costs forcing tough choices between paying energy bills and buying food, medicine or other essentials. The American Jobs Plan will upgrade low-income homes to make them more energy efficient through a historic investment in the Weatherization Assistance Program, a new Clean Energy and Sustainability Accelerator to finance building improvements, and expanded tax credits to support home energy upgrades.

Clean Energy Jobs

As of 2019, there were 112,720 North Carolinians working in clean energy, and the American Jobs Plan invests in creating more good paying union jobs advancing clean energy production by extending and expanding tax credits for clean energy generation, carbon capture and sequestration and clean energy manufacturing.

Veterans Health
North Carolina is home to over 700,000 veterans, 11.3% of whom are women and 41.7% of whom are over the age of 65. The President is calling for $18 billion to improve the infrastructure of VA health care facilities to ensure the delivery of world-class, state of the art care to veterans enrolled in the VA health care system. This includes improvements to ensure appropriate care for women and older veterans.

"These are investments designed to create jobs in the short run," U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo told ABC11 in an exclusive interview. "And in the long run, we want American businesses to compete. American workers want to compete."

Raimondo is one of five members of Biden's Cabinet to take the lead on selling the proposal to the American people and Congress. The so-called 'Jobs Cabinet' includes a group of former mayors and governors: Raimondo, the former governor of Rhode Island, Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm, Housing and Urban Development Secretary Marcia Fudge, and Labor Secretary Marty Walsh.

"I think we should try to do what the moment calls for," Raimondo explained. "North Carolina is no stranger to innovation. You have a good economy and this package will make it stronger and make it more equal access so everyone can have those jobs."

Infrastructure has long been a priority for both Democrats and Republicans, though differences are emerging between the two sides on the sheer size and scope of the American Jobs Plan.

"What this does is it basically gives a shopping cart to the President for anything and everything he feels is a priority," Rep. Greg Murphy (R-North Carolina) told ABC11. "You can't redefine what the word infrastructure means just because you want to satisfy a liberal wish list."

Opponents of the package are also against a proposed raise on corporate taxes to help pay for the investments.

"It's fancy to say we're going to raise corporate taxes because corporations are bad but corporations are people, your retirement funds and your workforce," Murphy added. "I can't follow their logic because it's not logical."

According to Raimondo, raising the tax rate from 21% to 25% won't push jobs overseas.

"I don't think that's a risk."
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