President Biden and Vice President Harris support the Senate’s passage of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, the largest long-term investment in our infrastructure and competitiveness in nearly a century. The need for action in North Carolina is clear and recently released state-level data demonstrates that the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act will deliver for North Carolina. For decades, infrastructure in North Carolina has suffered from a systemic lack of investment. The historic Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act will make life better for millions of North Carolina residents, create a generation of good-paying union jobs and economic growth, and position the United States to win the 21st century. Specifically, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act will:
• Repair and rebuild our roads and bridges with a focus on climate change mitigation, resilience, equity, and safety for all users, including cyclists and pedestrians. In North 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 Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act is the single largest dedicated bridge investment since the construction of the interstate highway system. Based on formula funding alone, North Carolina would expect to receive $7.2 billion for federal-aid highway apportioned programs and $457 million for bridge replacement and repairs under the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act over five years (1). North Carolina can also compete for the $12.5 billion Bridge Investment Program for economically significant bridges and nearly $16 billion of national funding in the bill dedicated for major projects that will deliver substantial economic benefits to communities.
• Improve healthy, sustainable transportation options for millions of Americans. 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. 15% of transit vehicles in the state are past useful life. Based on formula funding alone, North Carolina would expect to receive $911 million over five years under the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act to improve public transportation options across the state (2).
• Build a network of EV chargers to facilitate long-distance travel and provide convenient charging options. The U.S. market share of plug-in electric vehicle (EV) sales is only one-third the size of the Chinese EV market. The President believes that must change. The bill invests $7.5 billion to build out the first-ever national network of EV chargers in the United States and is a critical element in the Biden-Harris Administration’s plan to accelerate the adoption of EVs to address the climate crisis and support domestic manufacturing jobs. Under the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, North Carolina would expect to receive $109 million over five years to support the expansion of an EV charging network in the state (3). North Carolina will also have the opportunity to apply for the $2.5 billion in grant funding dedicated to EV charging in the bill.
• Help connect every American to reliable high-speed internet. Broadband internet is necessary for Americans to do their jobs, to participate equally in school learning, health care, and to stay connected. Yet 14% of North Carolina households do not have an internet subscription, and 4% of North Carolinians live in areas where, under the FCC’s benchmark, there is no broadband infrastructure. Under the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, North Carolina will receive a minimum allocation of $100 million to help provide broadband coverage across the state, including providing access to the at least 424,000 North Carolinians who currently lack it. And, under the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, 3,219,000 or 31% of people in North Carolina will be eligible for the Affordability Connectivity Benefit, which will help low-income families afford internet access.
Over the coming days and weeks, we will expect to receive additional data on the impact of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act in North Carolina.
1 These values are estimates and may change based on updated factor data each fiscal year. 2 Transit formula funding amounts are subject to changes resulting from the 2020 census or from annual transit service data reported to FTA’s National Transit Database. 3 These values are estimates and may change based on updated factor data each fiscal year.