Infrastructure spending is perhaps the one form of government spending that all aisles can agree to. With billions upon billions of people and items needing to travel from point A to point B, infrastructure investment certainly pays dividends. Now, the federal government is allocating tons of money for bridges, in what the United States Department of Transportation is calling the largest dedicated bridge investment since the Interstate Highway System. Construction companies may just find some federal dollars in their pockets!
The funding plan is $26.5 billion over five years, or an even $5.3 billion each year. The funding will touch all fifty states, Puerto Rico, and Washington, D.C..
While each “state” is assured to obtain a minimum of $38.25 million for main bridges and $6.75 million for “off-system” bridges (public, but not federal), totaling $45 million, the funding for each state scales with population. California, the most populous of them all, is set to receive over $800 million in funding.
The funding stipulations require “states” to pony up their own funding equal to 20% of what they are expected to receive, making the total package for 2022 to be $6.36 billion spent. With the funding, the DOT expects 15,000 bridges to be repaired or replaced. While there are estimates of over 600,000 bridges in the United States, funding is expected to be allocated towards the most traveled bridges of each “state”.
The U.S. General Services Administration, the main way by which the federal government pays for work, puts additional bias for small, women-owned, and veteran-owned businesses. Construction businesses that average less than $7.5 million in annual receipts may stand to use this new spending as a way to grow their own business.
Whatever the case on US infrastructure, a quick trip out of the country is a great way to quickly realize how fortunate American citizens are to have their dilapidated roads. Belize, for example, has less than 20% of its roads paved and avoiding potholes is the name of the game on all roads, paved or not. With infrastructure investments, just about every American wins.
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