When the post was posted for Friday, President Biden had tweeted 2 times. He added 9 tweets giving him a Friday tweeting total 11 tweets and 0 retweets.
President Biden offered the following statement on; International Holocaust Remembrance Day (01/26/2023):
Tomorrow, Jill and I will pause to mourn the six million Jews who were systematically and savagely murdered by the Nazis and their collaborators during the Holocaust — and to grieve the Roma and Sinti, Slavs, people with disabilities, LGBTQ+ individuals, and political dissidents who were also killed. As we join nations around the world in bearing witness to this dark chapter in our shared history, we also honor survivors and their stories—pledging to always remember, and to keep faith with that sacred vow: “never again.”
“Never again” was a promise my father first instilled in me at our family dinner table, educating me and my siblings about the horrors of the Shoah. It’s a lesson I’ve passed on to my own children and grandchildren by taking them to Dachau to understand for themselves the depths of this evil—and the complicity of those who knew what was happening, yet said nothing. Seeing neo-Nazis and white nationalists march from the shadows in Charlottesville in 2017, spewing the same antisemitic bile we heard in the 1930s in Europe, drove me to run for president.
Sadly, we have seen over and over again that hate never goes away. It only hides—waiting to reemerge whenever it is given just a little bit of oxygen. And today, across our country, we are seeing swastikas on cars, antisemitic banners on bridges, verbal and physical attacks against Jewish businesses and Jewish Americans – even Holocaust denialism. It’s vile. It goes against everything we value as Americans. And each of us must speak out against this poison. Together, we must affirm, over and over, that hate has no safe harbor in America.
That is exactly what my Administration is doing. Working with partners around the country, we held a historic White House Summit on combating hate-fueled violence. We appointed the first Ambassador-level Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Antisemitism. We are developing a national strategy to fight antisemitism. We’ve secured the largest increase in funding ever for the physical security of non-profits—including synagogues and Jewish Community Centers. We continue to support Holocaust survivors to ensure they can live the rest of their lives with dignity and security. And to mark this day of remembrance, the Second Gentleman of the United States, Douglas Emhoff, is participating in a commemoration ceremony at the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp in Poland, and will be visiting Berlin, Germany to coordinate international efforts to combat antisemitism.
On International Holocaust Remembrance Day and every day, the United States stands with Holocaust victims, their families, and their descendants. We remember. We honor their stories. We will face down the hate and the lies that carry in them the terrifying echoes of one of the worst chapters in human history. And for generations to come, we will continue to defend our foundational values as a nation—freedom, equality, and dignity for all human beings.White House.gov. 01/26/2023.
The Times of Israel reported that seven people were shot and killed while three others were wounded when a terrorist opened fire in a Jewish East Jerusalem neighborhood. Police said the terrorist was shot dead after he exited the car and opened fire on the officers waiting for him.
They go on to say that according to Channel 12 news; the terrorist first shot an elderly woman in the street, then encountered a motorcycle rider and shot him, before reaching the Ateret Avraham synagogue and opening fire at people outside.
They also said; With seven killed, the shooting in Jerusalem was the deadliest terror attack since 2011, when terrorists crossed into Israel from Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula, killing eight Israelis. It was the deadliest Palestinian terror attack since 2008, when a gunman from East Jerusalem killed eight Israeli students at the Mercaz Harav yeshiva in the capital.
White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre offered a statement on the terror attack that took place Friday:
We strongly condemn the heinous terror attack that took place this evening at a synagogue in Jerusalem, and are shocked and saddened by the loss of life, including the killing of at least eight innocent victims. The attack tragically occurred on International Holocaust Remembrance Day, when the memory of those lost in the Holocaust is commemorated around the world. The United States will extend our full support to the Government and people of Israel. Accordingly, the President has directed his national security team to engage immediately with Israeli counterparts to offer all appropriate support in assisting the wounded and bringing the perpetrators of this horrible crime to justice.White House.gov. 01/27/2023.
The White House posted a readout of the call between President Biden and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu:
President Biden spoke with Israeli Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu to discuss the horrific terror attack tonight in Jerusalem, which claimed at least seven innocent Israeli lives. The President made clear that this was an attack against the civilized world. He offered all appropriate means of support to the Government and People of Israel over the coming days. The President stressed the iron-clad U.S. commitment to Israel’s security, and agreed that his team would remain in constant touch with their Israeli counterparts.White House.gov. 01/27/2023.
The White House also posted the call readout between Vice President Harris and President Herzog of Israel:
Vice President Kamala Harris spoke today with President Isaac Herzog of Israel to offer condolences for the horrific terror attack at a synagogue in Jerusalem, a senseless act of violence that took the lives of at least seven innocent victims at a place of worship. The Vice President also condemned and expressed concern about subsequent violent attacks. The Vice President offered all appropriate support to the Government and people of Israel in the coming days and beyond. The Vice President and President Herzog reflected on International Holocaust Remembrance Day, and discussed the importance of efforts to support Holocaust remembrance and combat antisemitism, including through Second Gentleman Douglas Emhoff’s trip to Poland and Germany. The Vice President stressed the unwavering commitment of the United States to Israel’s security, and reiterated U.S. support for efforts to advance stability and integration throughout the region.White House.gov. 01/27/2023.
The video is 1 minute and 45 seconds long.
President Biden: Right now over 40 millions Americans eligible for debt relief are being denied that immediate relief today. Why? Because Republican officials and special interests hit us with lawsuits to block it. Folks, I know you’re frustrated. I am as well.
Senator Bernie Sanders (D-VT): And I am too. For millions of working and middle-class Americans who are under the burden of crushing loan debt student debt relief would be life changing. And guess what? Because of these Republican officials, not even 1 of the over 80,000 people from Delaware, where I know you’re from Joe, who applied for student debt relief or were eligible for automatic loans forgiveness have been able to get a dime of that relief.
President Biden: The fact is that in Vermont, Bernie, it’s over 50,000 borrowers. 50,000 borrowers. And what about bigger states? How about the state of Texas? [2,000,000+ borrowers flashes on the screen] and the state of Missouri? [500,000+ borrowers flashes on the screen].
Senator Bernie Sanders (D-VT): Well, Joe, it’d be over 2 million and close 500,000 borrowers, respectively. The list goes on.
President Biden: In state after state, no matter what these Republican officials say, we know student debt relief will make a real difference for people. We’re going to get it done. It’s good policy, the law is on our side, and we’re doing the right thing. We’re going to get it done.
Senator Bernie Sanders (D-VT): And I didn’t hear any of these Republican official complaining when the government gave huge tax breaks to big corporations. But here they are, stopping relief for working families.
President Biden: Look, we’re fighting like hell to get this done. We’re in court next month, so keep the faith and spread the faith.
The CBO said on 01/09/2023: H.R. 23 would rescind unobligated funds provided by paragraphs (1)(A)(ii), (1)(A)(iii), (1)(B), (2), (3), (4), and (5) of section 10301 of Public Law 117–169. CBO estimates that the bill would decrease outlays by $71 billion and decrease receipts by $186 billion over the 2023-2032 period. Both of those effects are included in accordance with Guideline 14.
According to Yahoo! Finance what this “CBO estimates that the bill would decrease outlays by $71 billion and decrease receipts by $186 billion over the 2023-2032 period” means is that federal spending would be cut by $71 billion dollars over the next 9-ish years but it would reduce the tax revenue by almost 186 billion over that same time frame.
H.R. 23 – Family and Small Business Taxpayer Protection Act passed the House on 01/09/2023:
|01/09/2023||Passed/agreed to in House: On passage Passed by the Yeas and Nays: 221 – 210 (Roll no. 25).(text: CR H76)|
|01/09/2023||Introduced in House|
The latest action says:
|Senate – 01/25/2023 Read the second time. Placed on Senate Legislative Calendar under General Orders. Calendar No. 1. (All Actions)|
It’s unlikely that it passes the Senate. But if by some miracle it does, President Biden has already said he will veto the bill.
The 40 second video clip was taken from remarks he gave on 01/26/2023 regarding the economy.
President Biden: And now these MAGA Republican in the House introduced another bill that’s going to eliminate the IRS, going to eliminate it completely — the only guys who can go in and look at the complicated tax returns that people have — and replace the IRS — which — that’d be nice; no IR- — no taxes, right? — except with a 30 percent national sales tax on everything from if you buy a home to a car to eggs.
President Biden: That’s right — they want to raise taxes on working- and middle-class people in America by passing a national sales tax, taxing every item from groceries, gasoline, clothing, supplies, medicine, even big-ticket items like rent and cars. Thirty percent sales tax on all of those issu- — all those pieces.
President Biden: Look, that’s how they’re starting this new term: cutting taxes on billionaires, raising taxes on middle-class families, and making inflation worse. For real.
The bill he is talking about is H.R.25- FairTax Act of 2023 introduced in the House on 01/09/2023.
I shared his full statement in Friday’s Biden Bits. I will share it again…
I’ve known Ron Klain since he was a third-year law student. He came to work for me on the Senate Judiciary Committee, and I knew the moment he started that he was a once-in-a-generation talent with a fierce and brilliant intellect. Just as important, he has a really big heart.
I want to thank Ron and his wife Monica and their three children for their commitment to being a part of my team all these years.
During the last 36 years, Ron and I have been through some real battles together. And when you’re in the trenches with somebody for as long as I have been with Ron, you really get to know the person. You see what they’re made of.
When I was elected President, I knew that I wanted Ron to lead the White House staff. He was uniquely qualified given his prior public service. He knows how government works, how politics works, how Congress and the White House works. He is as tough, smart, determined, and persistent as anyone I have ever met. He assembled the most diverse and the most talented White House team in history and leaned on them to solve impossible challenges.
Working together, we have made incredible progress fighting COVID, reviving our economy, rebuilding our infrastructure, and winning the confirmation of almost 100 federal judges, including the first Black woman on the United States Supreme Court. We have taken big steps to tackle climate change, advance civil rights, and address student debt. We’ve been reasserting America’s place in the world, and maybe most important of all – restoring faith in our democracy.
This progress will be the legacy of this White House team, working under Ron’s leadership.
And while we have accomplished an extraordinary amount, the real mark of Ron’s success is that he is beloved by the team he leads here at the White House. They’re going to miss him just as much as I will.
That’s why it is important to fill Ron’s shoes with someone who understands what it means to lead a team, and who is as focused on getting things done.
I’ve seen Jeff Zients tackle some of the toughest issues in government.
When I was Vice President, I first got to know him at the beginning of the Obama-Biden Administration, working closely on American Recovery and Reinvestment Act implementation as Jeff was a leader at the Office of Management and Budget. He was later handed the daunting and complicated task of fixing healthcare.gov, which he did successfully, helping get millions of Americans quality, affordable health insurance. He led the National Economic Council, and shares my focus on strengthening our economy to work for everyone. He helped manage our Administration’s transition into office under incredibly trying circumstances. Thanks to Jeff, we had a historically diverse team in place on Day 1 ready to go to work. And he led our COVID response, a massive logistical undertaking of historic proportions.
When I ran for office, I promised to make government work for the American people. That’s what Jeff does. A big task ahead is now implementing the laws we’ve gotten passed efficiently and fairly.
I’m confident that Jeff will continue Ron’s example of smart, steady leadership, as we continue to work hard every day for the people we were sent here to serve.
I am grateful for his service and that of his family – his wife Mary and their children – for making this commitment with him.
Next week, the White House will host an official transition event to thank Ron for his tireless work and officially welcome Jeff back to the White House in this role.White House.gov. 01/27/2023.
He is referencing these SBA Isabel Guzman tweets posted on 01/17/2023:
The President and First Lady hosted a Lunar New Year Celebration in the White House on 01/26/2023. The 1 minute and 3 second video is a montage of that event, the voice-overs are taken from their remarks.
First Lady Dr. Jill Biden: It’s an honor to be with all of you here for the first Lunar New Year reception at the White House! (Applause.)
First Lady Dr. Jill Biden: This is an historic house, but you make it a home, alive with purpose and possibility. So, today we celebrate the Lunar New Year together. We will continue to shape this country we call home, meeting each new day with faith in our communities, hope, and hard work.
President Biden: You know, I’m really honored to be with you all tonight. For centuries, families in Asia and the United States and all around the world have gathered to celebrate the first moon of the new year. It’s a time of renewal and reflection, hope and possibilities — for good over evil, for sharing meals, for celebrating firecra- — no firecrackers tonight. (Laughter.)
President Biden: But, you know, celebrating with firecrackers and dance. We got dance. (Laughter.) Honoring your ancestors while passing down traditions to the next generation.
President Biden: So, to start the new tradition in the nation for holidays that — where the home is central, Jill and I are honored to welcome you to the first Lunar New Year Reception of this scale held in the White House — your home. (Applause.) This is your home.
His full statement:
Like so many, I was outraged and deeply pained to see the horrific video of the beating that resulted in Tyre Nichols’ death. It is yet another painful reminder of the profound fear and trauma, the pain, and the exhaustion that Black and Brown Americans experience every single day.White House.gov. 01/27/2023.
My heart goes out to Tyre Nichols’ family and to Americans in Memphis and across the country who are grieving this tremendously painful loss. The footage that was released this evening will leave people justifiably outraged. Those who seek justice should not to resort to violence or destruction. Violence is never acceptable; it is illegal and destructive. I join Mr. Nichols’ family in calling for peaceful protest.
I spoke with RowVaughn Wells and Rodney Wells, Mr. Nichols’ mother and stepfather, this afternoon. There are no words to describe the heartbreak and grief of losing a beloved child and young father. Nothing can bring Mr. Nichols back to his family and the Memphis community. But Mr. and Mrs. Wells, Mr. Nichols’ son, and his whole family deserve a swift, full, and transparent investigation.
We must do everything in our power to ensure our criminal justice system lives up to the promise of fair and impartial justice, equal treatment, and dignity for all. Real and lasting change will only come if we take action to prevent tragedies like this from ever happening again. That is why I called on Congress to send the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act to my desk. When Senate Republicans blocked that bill, I signed an executive order that mandated stricter use of force standards and accountability provisions for federal law enforcement, as well as measures to strengthen accountability at the state and local level.
The Vice President offered her own statement:
Tyre Nichols should have made it home to his family. Yet, once again, America mourns the life of a son and father brutally cut short at the hands of those sworn to protect and serve. The footage and images released tonight will forever be seared in our memories, and they open wounds that will never fully heal.White House.gov. 01/27/2023.
The persistent issue of police misconduct and use of excessive force in America must end now.
I join President Biden in his call for accountability and transparency. We must build trust—not fear—within our communities.
Congress must act with urgency and pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act. To truly honor Tyre Nichols’ memory, and the memory of so many others before him, we must demand that our justice system lives up to its name.
The City of Memphis posted 4 video’s to Vimeo of the night Tyre Nichols was critical injured by cops following a traffic stop. Tyre died three days after the attack.
I will warn you the videos are not for the faint of heart. I managed to watch some of the pole camera footage; it does not contain sound.
Saturday’s Tweeting Total =’s 6 tweets and 0 retweets…
The 27 seconds video has no voice-over just music. It lists the; 7 things to know about the economy under President Biden:
- Gas prices are now down about $1.50 from their peak
- Lowest unemployment rate in 50 years
- Getting seniors breathing room because of the $35 insulin cap
- Record number of families have signed up for health care, saving up to $800 per person
- Strongest 2 years for small business applications
- Annual inflation has fallen for 6 months in a row
- Wages are higher now than 6 months ago
The Biden economic plan is working.
The White House posted the follow fact-sheet on 01/27/2023; Biden-Harris Administration Releases New Data Showing 26 Million People in All 50 States Applied or Were Automatically Eligible for One-Time Student Debt Relief
New data comes as elected officials and special interests actively block many of their own constituents from getting relief
Today, the Biden-Harris Administration released new data showing the number of people in each state who applied for student debt relief or were automatically eligible for relief. These borrowers could be benefitting from the Administration’s program right now were it not for lawsuits brought by elected officials and special interests. In August, President Biden announced his Administration’s plan to provide up to $20,000 in debt relief for borrowers earning less than $125,000 per year. The Administration’s program aimed to protect borrowers most at risk of delinquency or default as a result of hardships brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic when the payment pause ends.
In the less than four weeks that the application was available, 26 million people either applied for debt relief or had already provided sufficient information to the Department of Education (Department) to be deemed eligible for relief. Over 16 million of those borrowers’ applications were fully approved by the Department and sent to loan servicers. However, in November of last year– less than a month after the application was first released – the Department was required to stop accepting applications as a result of lawsuits brought by opponents of the program. Loan servicers were thus prevented from discharging any debt.
Overall, more than 40 million borrowers would qualify for the Biden Administration’s debt relief program. Nearly 90% of the benefits of the relief going to out-of-school borrowers would go to those earning less than $75,000 per year. Millions of those borrowers could be experiencing the benefits of that relief today – were it not for lawsuits brought on by elected officials in some of their own states. For more information, visit StudentAid.gov/debtrelief.
Below is a full breakdown of how many people applied for debt relief and whose applications were approved by the Department before the Administration was blocked from discharging debt, rounded to the nearest thousand.White House.gov. 01/27/2023.
|State||Number of people who|
applied or were deemed
automatically eligible for relief
|Number of fully-approved|
applications sent to loan servicers
|District of Columbia||72,000||46,000|
|All Other Locations*||58,000||33,000|
|State Not Identified**||632,000||31,000|
* Borrowers who are in outlying territories, military zones, or currently outside of the United States
** Includes individuals for whom the Department of Education did not have an address on file or from whom more information was needed at the time that the program was blocked.
Sunday’s Tweeting Total =’s 9 tweets and 0 retweets…
From his economic remarks given on 01/26/2023:
President Biden: So, let me close with this. We have more work to do, but we’re on the right track. We’re on the right track. Roads and bridges are being built. Factories are coming online. People are back to work. Families are breathing just a little bit easier, as my dad would say.
President Biden: I’ve never been more optimistic — and I mean this from the bottom of my heart, my word as a Biden: I’ve never been more optimistic about America’s future than I am today. Never.
You can find more at White House.gov/The Record.
Talking again about H.R.25 the bill that would dismantle the IRS and replace income tax with a national sales tax. It’s still a terrible idea.
The White House posted the following fact-sheet on Friday; Biden-Harris Administration Announces New Actions and Progress to Protect Communities From Lead Pipes and Paint
Today, at a White House Summit on Accelerating Lead Pipe Replacement hosted by Vice President Harris, the Biden-Harris Administration announced new actions and progress to deliver clean drinking water, replace lead pipes, and remediate lead paint to protect children and communities across America. Through historic levels of funding from President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and American Rescue Plan, annual appropriations, and harnessing a variety of tools across federal, state, and local government, the Administration is delivering tangible progress on the groundbreaking Biden-Harris Lead Pipe and Paint Action Plan announced in December of 2021. The Biden-Harris Administration is working aggressively to replace all lead service lines in America in the next decade.
Today’s White House Summit will feature discussions with state and local officials, along with water utility, labor union, and nongovernmental partners, on reducing risks to public health posed by lead pipes. The following actions are being announced:White House.gov. 01/27/2023.
- Vice President Harris is announcing a new Biden-Harris Get the Lead Out Partnership comprised of state and local officials, water utilities, labor unions, and other nongovernmental organizations who have committed to advance and accelerate lead pipe replacement. The Vice President sent a letter to Governors across the country calling on them to join the new partnership, deploy the federal funding available in their state, and ensure investments reach overburdened and underserved communities.
- The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), in collaboration with the Department of Labor (DOL), is announcing a new partnership with four states—Connecticut, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin—to create “Lead Service Line Replacement Accelerators” to drive progress on removing lead service lines. This action will enhance the effectiveness of Bipartisan Infrastructure Law investments to advance progress on President Biden’s goal of removing of lead pipes all across America.
In addition, today, EPA is announcing $1.2 billion in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law revolving loan funds have already reached 23 states for lead service line identification and replacement.White House.gov. 01/27/2023.
MAJOR NEW ACTIONS
New Biden-Harris Get the Lead Out Partnership in collaboration with 100+ state and local leaders, nongovernmental organizations, water utilities, labor unions, and others: Today, the Biden-Harris Administration is announcing an innovative partnership to leverage existing efforts and funding to meet our commitment to accelerate the replacement of lead service lines and pipes by the end of the decade while creating good paying jobs and prioritizing lead remediation efforts in overburdened and underserved communities. The Biden-Harris Get the Lead Out Partnership is a coalition of federal government, states, Tribes, local communities, water utilities, labor unions, and nongovernmental organizations that has committed to advance a shared set of principles to accelerate lead service line replacement. The inaugural 100+ members of the Partnership are listed at the bottom of this factsheet.
Announcing the Creation of Lead Service Line Replacement Accelerators: Today, EPA is excited to unveil a new initiative—its “Lead Service Line Replacement (LSLR) Accelerators.” This initiative will be launched in partnership with Department of Labor, Connecticut, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin to provide targeted technical assistance services to communities to make progress on replacing lead pipes that pose risk to the health of children and families. Through the LSLR Accelerators initiative, EPA will provide hands-on support to guide communities through the process of lead service line removals, from start to finish. Technical assistance services will include technical assistance in developing lead service line replacement plans, conducting inventories to identify lead pipes, increasing community outreach and education efforts, and supporting applications for Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding. This will result in more communities accessing their fair share of federal funds to secure a lead-free future. Partnership is core to the LSLR Accelerators initiative. EPA will collaborate each step of the way with the four partner states and support them in strategically deploying funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and seeking innovative ways to accelerate lead pipe removal. As this program moves forward, EPA and Department of Labor will collaborate to provide tools aimed at increasing job quality standards, equity, and resources to accelerate the development of the skilled water workforce needed to undertake these community and system-wide lead service line replacement programs. This initiative will include the development of best practices and creative approaches that can serve as a roadmap for the rest of the country.White House.gov. 01/27/2023.
GETTING RESOURCES TO COMMUNITIES
$1.2 Billion from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law is Being Utilized for Lead Pipe Replacement in 23 States, Tribes, and Territories: Today, EPA is announcing that $1.2 billion in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law revolving loan funds has already reached 23 states for lead service line identification and replacement. The 2022 allocation was the first of five years of nearly $15 billion in dedicated EPA funding for lead service lines that states will receive through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. In May 2022, EPA also announced the 2022 allocation of $1.9 billion from the $11.7 billion in Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding from the general Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (SRF), which can be used to support lead service line removal, along with other drinking water infrastructure projects. EPA anticipates releasing the 2023 Bipartisan Infrastructure Law DWSRF allotments, based on the results of the 7th Drinking Water Infrastructure Needs Survey Assessment, this spring.
Removing Lead in Private and Federally Assisted Housing. Earlier this month, HUD made available $568 million to address lead-based paint and additional housing-related hazards through two Notices of Funding Opportunities (NOFOs) that will make homes healthier and safer for low-income families. The first NOFO provides over $403 million in grants to state and local governments for improving health and safety in privately-owned older (pre-1978) homes of low-income families under HUD’s Lead Hazard Reduction Grant Program—one of the program’s largest health and safety funding opportunities to date for privately-owned housing. The second funding notice provides $165 million in grants to Public Housing Agencies for improving health and safety in public housing—the largest health and safety investment to date for public housing. With this investment, since 1993, HUD has made more than $2.7 billion available to protect children, families, and individuals from exposure to lead and other hazards in their homes. In 2023, HUD will invest an additional $290 million for health and safety improvements in privately-owned housing.White House.gov. 01/27/2023.
Clarifying State, Local, and Tribal governments Can Use Fiscal Recovery Funds—the $350 Billion in Aid Provided Under the American Rescue Plan—for Replacing Lead Service Lines and Protecting Communities Against Lead in Water: In January 2022, the Treasury Department issued the final rule addressing the use of State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds, which provided for an expanded set of eligible lead remediation uses, including replacement of faucets and fixtures in schools and child care centers, and confirms recipients’ ability to use funds for the replacement of lead services lines. Recipients had budgeted over $345 million in American Rescue Plan funds for lead remediation projects as of September 30, 2022. Examples include:
- Washington D.C. has budgeted $30 million to increase funding available to assist residents in replacing lead water service lines to their homes.
- Rochester, NY, has budgeted $21.5 million to replace lead service lines.
- Bay City, MI obligated $6 million to remove lead pipes in the city by hiring a crew of four new Water Department employees that will be solely dedicated to lead service line replacement.
Directing Federal Agencies to Leverage Existing Funding: In March, for the first time, Office of Management and Budget (OMB) formulated a preliminary lead pipes crosscut of existing funding for the Fiscal Year 2023 President’s Budget. The crosscut will be updated for the 2024 budget. In January 2023, OMB issued guidance to agencies to leverage and prioritize existing funding to achieve the President’s lead remediation goal, while directing 40 percent of the benefits to disadvantaged communities and ensuring the replacement of entire lead service lines.White House.gov. 01/27/2023.
Leveraging USDA Funding to Mitigate Lead: As of January 20, 2021, USDA has awarded a total of $132 million in loans and grants for projects dealing with lead, including $78.2 million being announced today to reduce exposure to lead in drinking water. These awards include funding for: the City of Bloomer, Wisconsin, for a water and sewer upgrade and replacement of 20,000 feet of lead-jointed water mains; the Anson Madison Water District in Maine to mitigate lead exposure for 3,700 residents; the city of Linwood, Kansas to replace 75 water service lines with lead joints; the Village of Elberta, Michigan to improve their water system, with 79 percent of service lines estimated to be lead; and Columbus County, North Carolina, for the construction and cost overrun of a new replacement school facility housing Pre-K through 8th grade. Many of these projects utilize funding from various sources, including HUD and state-provided funding.
Issuing Guidance to States and Communities to Support Lead Service Line Removal: EPA’s March 2022 Bipartisan Infrastructure Law State Revolving Fund (SRF) implementation memo highlights the flexibility provided to states and borrowers to address lead in drinking water, the creation of dedicated funding to remove lead service lines, and the priority of ensuring that disadvantaged communities benefit equitably from this investment. The memo also:
- Emphasizes that 49 percent of Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funds provided through the DWSRF must be provided as grants and forgivable loans to disadvantaged communities
- Clarifies that any project funded under the $15 billion Bipartisan Infrastructure Law appropriation for the replacement of lead service lines must replace the entire line, not just a portion, unless a portion has already been replaced.
EPA also released additional guidance that will help communities and water utilities identify lead pipes that connect drinking water service to homes and other buildings by developing and maintaining service line inventories, support notifications to consumers served by lead pipes, and provide states with information on oversight and reporting to EPA.White House.gov. 01/27/2023.
PROTECTING COMMUNITIES FROM LEAD WITH TESTING & ENFORCEMENT
Helping to Close Gaps in Childhood Lead Testing: In October 2021, CDC updated the Blood Lead Reference Value (BLRV) to 3.5 micrograms per deciliter of blood based on the most recent National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey data. Over the past year, 21 states have changed their laws or policies to provide case management or other services to children with blood lead levels higher than the updated BLRV of 3.5 micrograms per deciliter. As a result of this action, more children are receiving early intervention to prevent additional lead exposure and its associated harms. CDC also provides funding to 62 Childhood Lead Poisoning Prevention Programs, which support blood lead testing and reporting, enhanced surveillance, and establishing linkages of lead-exposed children to recommended services. CDC used increased funding provided in 2022 to support additional capacity-building awards for currently unfunded jurisdictions. CDC will continue efforts to expand direct assistance to additional states and territories until all at-risk children live in a jurisdiction where a safety-net childhood lead poisoning prevention program exists.
Advancing Regulations to Protect Communities from Lead in Drinking Water and Paint: EPA has taken several steps in the process of proposing the Lead and Copper Rule Improvements (LCRI). EPA is actively engaging in multiple consultations and stakeholder engagement activities prior to proposing the LCRI. Key activities include tribal consultation, consultations with the National Drinking Water Advisory Committee and its Science Advisory Board and environmental justice engagements. In addition, HUD is in the process of implementing its Lead Safe Housing Rule that eliminates or mitigates lead-based paint hazards through its housing rehabilitation assistance.White House.gov. 01/27/2023.
DECREASING LEAD EXPOSURE IN DISADVANTAGED COMMUNITIES
Reducing Lead Exposures and Disparities in Communities: On October 27, 2022, EPA released its Strategy to Reduce Lead Exposures and Disparities in U.S. Communities in conjunction with National Lead Poisoning Prevention Week. This first-ever, agency-wide lead strategy outlines how EPA will utilize its full suite of authorities, expertise, and resources to reduce lead exposure in communities overburdened by pollution and advance the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to environmental justice and equity.
Tracking the Benefits of Lead Pipe and Paint Investments in line with Justice40: To meet the President’s commitment to target 40 percent of the benefits of climate and clean energy investments to disadvantaged communities, OMB and Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) are committing to track and make publicly available lead pipe and paint investments to disadvantaged communities. In November 2022, CEQ released Version 1 of the Climate and Economic Justice Screening Tool (CEJST), which helps identify disadvantaged communities.White House.gov. 01/27/2023.
ADVANCING LEAD REMEDIATION IN SCHOOLS AND CHILD CARE CENTERS
To achieve the President’s commitment to reduce lead exposure in the 400,000 schools and child care facilities at risk of exposure, the Action Plan called for the development of a Cabinet Level Partnership for Lead Remediation in Schools and Child Care Centers. This partnership between the EPA, Department of Education, Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), and USDA will continue to make progress on lead remediation in schools and child care centers—safeguarding the health and well-being of a generation of young people. Developments from the last year of this Interagency Partnership include:White House.gov. 01/27/2023.
- In October 2022, EPA announced projects in disadvantaged communities that have been selected to receive over $30 million in grant funding under WIIN. This grant funding will assist schools with removing sources of lead in drinking water.
- USDA has awarded funding for community facilities, single family housing repair, and educational institutions to address this issue. Examples include:$9.5 million to Columbus County, North Carolina, for the construction and cost overrun of a new replacement school facility housing Pre-K through 8th grade. This new facility replaces two facilities that contained asbestos and lead paint.
- $6 million for Anson Madison Water District in Maine in low-interest loans and $3.5 million in grants to mitigate lead exposure for 3,700 residents, including at schools.
- The Department of Education will continue to show leadership in healthy, sustainable, 21st century school environments by gathering commitments for school infrastructure and sustainability.
- EPA and the Office of Head Start, Office of Child Care, held a three-part joint webinar series on “Implementing a 3Ts Program for Lead in Water Testing Throughout Child Care and Early Childhood Facilities.”
BIDEN HARRIS GET THE LEAD OUT INAUGURAL PARTNERS
The Biden-Harris Get the Lead Out Partnership is a coalition of federal government, states, Tribes, local communities, water utilities, labor unions, and nongovernmental organizations that has committed to advance a shared set of principles to accelerate lead service line replacement. The inaugural 123 members of the Partnership include.White House.gov. 01/27/2023.
- State of Connecticut
- State of New Jersey
- State of Pennsylvania
- State of Wisconsin
- The Onkwehonwe Nation of Aborigines of the Americas
- Erie County, PA
- City of Albany, NY
- City of Ann Arbor, MI
- City of Benton Harbor, MI
- Town of Bethlehem, NY
- City of Buffalo, NY
- City of Cleveland, OH
- City of Detroit, MI
- Borough of East Newark, NJ
- City of Edgerton, WI
- City of Evanston, IL
- Town of Fayette, MS
- City of Flint, MI
- Village of Hazel Crest, IL
- City of Jackson, MS
- City of Kenosha, WI
- City of Little Rock, AR
- City of Madison, WI
- City of Milwaukee, WI
- City of Newburgh, NY
- City of New Haven, CT
- City of New London, CT
- City of Newark, NJ
- Town of North Providence, RI
- City of Pittsburgh, PA
- City of Rochester, MN
- City of Rochester, NY
- City of Sheboygan, WI
- City of Somerville, MA
- City of Syracuse, NY
- City of Wausau, WI
- City of Zion, IL
- United Association of Journeymen and Apprentices of the Plumbing and Pipefitting Industry Union (UA)
- North America’s Building Trades Union (NABTU)
- Cynthia and George Mitchell Foundation
- Gates Family Foundation
- Kresge Foundation
- Laurel Foundation
- Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
- The Keith Campbell Foundation for the Environment
- The Texas Wellspring Fund
- The Water Solutions Fund
- Turner-Water Foundation
- Water Foundation
- American Water
- Anne Adrunel County Water District
- Buffalo Water
- Boston Public Health Commission
- Boston Water and Sewer Commission
- Chelsea Water
- Connecticut Department of Health
- DC Water
- Denver Water
- Fairmont MN Water & Wastewater
- Greater Cincinnati Water Works
- Louisville Water Company
- Manitowoc WI Water Systems
- Milwaukee Water Works
- Philadelphia Water Department
- Pittsburgh Water and Sewage Authority
- Seattle Public Utilities
- Sewerage and Water Board of New Orleans
- A+ Schools
- Alliance for the Great Lakes
- American Public Health Association
- American Society of Civil Engineers
- Association of State and Territorial Health Officials
- Association of State Drinking Water Administrators
- Benton Harbor Community Water Council
- Black Millennials 4 Flint
- Center for Rural Enterprise and Environmental Justice
- Clean Water Action
- Community Advocates, Inc
- Community for a Cause
- Conservation Voters of Pennsylvania
- Cooper Square Committee
- Environmental Advocates NY
- Environmental Defense Fund
- Environmental Policy Innovation Center
- Great Lakes and St Lawrence Cities Initiative
- Hispanic Access Foundation
- Lake City Collective
- League of Conservation Voters
- Metropolitan Planning Council
- Moonshot Missions
- National Center for Healthy Housing
- National Rural Water Association
- Natural Resources Defense Council
- New York League of Conservation Voters
- Next 100 Coalition
- New Jersey Future
- North Carolina League of Conservation Voters
- Ohio Environmental Council
- Park Watershed
- Resources Legacy Fund
- Rural Community Assistance Partnership
- The Alaska Center
- The Green Infrastructure Leadership Exchange
- The Water Collaborative of Greater New Orleans
- UrbanKind Institute
- US Water Alliance
- Water and Wastewater Equipment Manufacturers Association
- Water Professionals International
- Waterkeeper Alliance
- WaterNow Alliance
The inaugural partners are also making the following announcements to accelerate the replacement of lead service lines and pipes by the end of the decade while creating good paying jobs and prioritizing lead remediation efforts in overburdened and underserved communitiesWhite House.gov. 01/27/2023.
- Denver Water is announcing that it was recently approved for $76 million from the Colorado Drinking Water State Revolving Fund, which will receive money from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. The funding will help fast-track the program, replacing thousands more customer-owned lead service lines in the next few years than had been originally anticipated. Since the lead reduction program started in January 2020, Denver Water has replaced more than 15,000 customer-owned lead service lines, prioritizing the replacement work areas where there are vulnerable, at-risk populations and disproportionately impacted communities. The lead lines are replaced with lead-free, copper lines at no direct cost to the customer.
- The City of Wausau and Wausau Water Works is announcing its commitment to map the city’s lead service lines and create a strategy for replacing 100 percent of its public and private lead service lines. Wausau is using both resources received from ARPA and BIL to achieve this success.
- The Town Council and Water Department in Bethlehem are announcing today a goal of replacing 100 percent of their lead pipes over the coming decade. The Town of Bethlehem is working on its LSL inventory using operational funds. Of the 12,000 water services in the town, service line material has been confirmed in approximately 6,800 of the public-side service lines and 3,600 of the private-side service lines.
- The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is announcing that it awarded over $15 million in grants and investments to support water equity efforts because access to safe, affordable water is a cornerstone of a healthy community. The Foundation is working with a wide range of leaders and changemakers to make sure that new investments in water infrastructure reach and are informed by communities that have been historically marginalized – ensuring that access to safe water is realized in the places that often experience the biggest barriers to health and wellbeing.
- BlueConduit is announcing that it is building the first ever national lead service line inventory and will publish it as an open-sourced nationwide map in 2023. This mapping will enable utilities to locate lead lines more accurately, accelerating the removal of lead and lowering the cost per successful replacement. BlueConduit is using data science to find lead pipes and has applied machine learning models across over 100 communities and water systems in 15 states.
- Environmental Policy Innovation Center (EPIC) announced today that it will support 50 overburdened communities across the country over the next three years in their lead service line replacement efforts. This includes help in developing lead pipe inventories and applying for federal funds, and assistance from everything from community outreach, to project prioritization, to technical help planning an implementation strategy for pipe replacement.
- The State of New Jersey is announcing that it will identify and replace all lead service lines statewide by 2031 through implementation of the 2021 Lead Service Line Replacement Law. New Jersey will also propose and seek to adopt a new State Lead and Copper Rule that will ensure proactive lead risk analysis and reduction measures by all drinking water systems as the State pursues the longer-term replacement of all lead service lines statewide. The State is also committing to develop and deploy State-sponsored technical assistance programs to support communities with lead service line inventory assistance, the development of lead service line replacement plans, and the sequencing of eligible projects for Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and Drinking Water State Revolving Fund investment.
- The City of Evanston is announcing a recently adopted workforce development program, hiring Evanston residents and training them on the skills needed for lead service line replacement and street restoration, implemented in partnership with its youth outreach team and augmenting that team’s violence prevention work.
- The City of Albany is announcing that it will remove its remaining 12,000 lead service lines by 2034. The city used $500,000 from the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding to assist the city in removing more than 700 full lead services since 2019.
- The City of Rochester is announcing that it will replace all remaining lead service lines (both public and private) by 2030. The City has already replaced 5,229 public lines and 106 public and private lead service lines, funded to-date by Federal ARPA dollars, Department of Health and the City’s own investments. The work has been prioritized in areas where people are most at risk, as nearly two-thirds of Rochester’s lead service lines are located in disadvantaged neighborhoods.
- The Village of Hazel Crest recently approved a resolution to remove all lead service lines within the Village. It won a commitment from the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) for $4 million in principal loan forgiveness to begin the work of replacing the village’s 2,700 lead service lines, and has made a commitment to prioritizing its most vulnerable residents in its lead pipe replacement plan.
- The City of Edgerton is highlighting its new city resolution to replace all remaining private lead lines in 2024 using Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding and funds provided by water utility rate payers. With more than $1 million in principal forgiveness funding provided by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources to date, the City of Edgerton has replaced 75 percent of its private lead service lines in the last two construction seasons.
The photo and text is from his economic remarks on 01/26/2023:
President Biden: By the end of this year, that’s going to be more than 20,000 projects. Big and small cities — east, west, north, and south — all part of it.
The photo was taken during President Biden’s visit to Just Q’in BBQ located in Cincinnati on 01/04/2023. The “t” in just is represented by a cross which the website explains; We glorify and honor God by providing authentic, well prepared food, while creating a warm and loving environment for all guests. Christian or non Christian, we want you to reap the benefits of our pursuit of excellence!
Getty images has two photos that show where President Biden fist greeted the guests and the backs of the guest and President Biden as they take the selfie.
President Biden shared an image via Twitter on 01/06/2023:
President Biden’s public schedule for Monday, 01/30/2023:
|9:00 AM||The President receives the Presidential Daily Briefing|
|10:35 AM||Out-of-Town Pool Call Time|
|11:00 AM||Supplemental Pool Call Time|
|12:50 PM||The President departs New Castle, Delaware en route Baltimore, Maryland|
|1:25 PM||The President arrives in Baltimore, Maryland|
|2:45 PM||The President discusses how Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding will replace the 150-year old Baltimore and Potomac Tunnel; The Secretary of Transportation attends|
|3:25 PM||In-Town Pool Call Time|
|3:45 PM||The President departs Baltimore, Maryland en route the White House|
|4:05 PM||The President arrives at the White House|
South Lawn Open Press
This morning the White House posted the following fact-sheet; President Biden Kicks off Major Baltimore Rail Tunnel Project Funded by Bipartisan Infrastructure Law
Replacing 150-Year Old Baltimore And Potomac Tunnel Will Create 30,000 Good-Paying Jobs And Address Largest Rail Bottleneck Between Washington, D.C and New Jersey
Continued Focus On Implementing Game-Changing Infrastructure Projects Including Brent Spence Bridge, Golden Gate Bridge, and Gateway Hudson Tunnel Project in New York
Continuing the Biden-Harris Administration’s focus on implementing its economic agenda to deliver real results for the American people, President Biden is traveling to Baltimore, Maryland, to kick off a major project funded by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to replace the 150-year old Baltimore and Potomac Tunnel. This project will address the largest rail bottleneck on the Northeast Corridor between Washington, D.C. and New Jersey, and create good-paying union jobs, improve reliability, lower commuting times, and enhance safety and resilience. The program is expected to generate 30,000 jobs, including approximately 20,000 direct construction jobs, most of which do not require a college degree.
President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law makes the largest investment in passenger rail since the creation of Amtrak, with a $66 billion investment in rail.
At the project kickoff event, the President will announce:White House.gov. 01/30/2023.
- A project kickoff agreement has been signed by the State of Maryland and Amtrak, which includes a $450 million commitment from the state’s transportation agency for the tunnel replacement project;
- A project labor agreement has been signed between Amtrak and the Baltimore-DC Building and Construction Trades Council, which is a local affiliate of North America’s Building Trades Unions (NABTU), to cover the first phase of the project to ensure the project creates good-paying, union jobs; and,
- An agreement is in place between Amtrak and North American Builders’ Trade Union (NABTU) that ensures Amtrak’s large civil engineering construction projects controlled by Amtrak will be performed under union agreements. Those agreements will address points such as wages, benefits, working conditions, avoiding work disruption, and promoting diversity and veteran hiring in the construction trades. With this agreement, Amtrak and NABTU will not face labor-related delays in the planning and contracting of major projects; contractors and subcontractors share Amtrak’s commitment to paying fair wages and benefits; and, Amtrak and NABTU can move forward with Bipartisan Infrastructure Law-funded projects with efficient labor-management relations.
Frederick Douglass Tunnel
The 150 year-old Baltimore and Potomac Tunnel is the oldest tunnel on the Northeast Corridor. The 1.4-mile tunnel beneath densely populated West Baltimore connects Baltimore’s Penn Station to points south. The tunnel is the largest Northeast Corridor bottleneck between Washington and New Jersey and a single point of failure for the nine million Amtrak and Maryland Area Commuter (MARC) passengers who rely on it annually. In other words, there are no detours possible if the aging tunnel were to unexpectedly close. The tunnel’s tight curvature and steep incline requires trains to reduce speeds to 30 mph. These issues create chronic delays — more than 10% of weekday trains are delayed, and delays occur on 99% of weekdays.
The Baltimore-Potomac Tunnel Replacement Program will build a new tunnel with two tubes along an alignment with softer curves; ventilation and emergency egress facilities; new signaling systems, overhead catenary, and track; five new roadway and railroad bridges in the area surrounding the tunnel; and a new ADA-accessible West Baltimore MARC station. The new tunnel will be named in honor of the civil rights leader and abolitionist, Frederick Douglass, a Maryland native and frequent railroad passenger after escaping to his freedom from slavery by boarding a train in Baltimore.
When the program is complete, speed and capacity improvements will help enable service growth and eliminate nearly seven hours of train delay for the average weekday. Capacity of the tunnel is expected to nearly triple, and trains travelling through the tunnel will be able to go a up to 110 miles per hour versus the current 30 miles per hour. By one estimate, replacing the tunnel would save nearly 450,000 hours per year for MARC and Amtrak customers.
The total cost of the program is expected to be approximately $6 billion, of which Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding could contribute up to $4.7 billion. While the project received $44 million through the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act for preliminary engineering and permitting, it lacked a viable funding source for construction until the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.
Now, with funding and the President’s commitment, early works, such as demolition, utility relocations, and select track work, will begin this calendar year. The program is expected to generate 30,000 jobs, including approximately 20,000 direct construction jobs. Amtrak is investing more than $50 million in local workforce development and community investments, including pre-apprenticeship and apprenticeship programs to ensure that local workers in West Baltimore can access these jobs.
Infrastructure Progress Across MarylandWhite House.gov. 01/30/2023.
Already in the first year of Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding, over $2.6 billion has been announced and is headed to Maryland with over 44 specific projects identified for funding. This includes:
- Roads and Bridges: In Maryland, there are 273 bridges and over 2,201 miles of highway in poor condition. To date, $1.8 billion has been announced in Maryland for roads, bridges, roadway safety, and major projects. This includes $1.6 billion in highway formula funding and $176.3 million in dedicated formula funding for bridges in 2022 and 2023.
- Airports and Ports: To date, Maryland has received approximately $31.8 million in 2022 and 2023 for airports and roughly $4.8 million in 2022 and 2023 for ports and waterways.
- Public Transit: Based on formula funding alone, Maryland would expect to receive approximately $1.8 billion over five years under the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to improve public transit across the state. To date, Maryland has been allocated $346.8 million to improve public transportation options across the state in fiscal year 2022 and 2023.
- Clean Buses: To date, Maryland has been awarded $9.4 million for the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean School Bus Program. In addition, communities in Maryland were awarded $16.8 million for clean transit buses and improved bus service through DOT’s Low- and No- Emission Bus and Bus and Bus Facilities Program.
- Electric Vehicle Charging: Through the National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Program alone, Maryland should expect to receive roughly $63 million in formula funding over five years to support the expansion of electric vehicle charging in the state. In September, the Biden-Harris Administration approved Maryland’s EV Charging plan which unlocks their ability to invest the first $22.7 million to build out a network of EV chargers across the state.
- High-Speed Internet: To date, Maryland has received $5 million through the Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment Program (BEAD) to help provide access to high-speed internet across the state. In addition, about 182,000 households in Maryland are enrolled in the Affordable Connectivity Program.
- Water: To date, $144 million has been announced to Maryland to provide clean and safe water across the state and improve water infrastructure. This includes $51.9 million is dedicated to lead pipe and service line replacement.
- Clean Energy & Power: To date, approximately $65.2 million has been allocated to Maryland for clean energy, energy efficiency, and power in 2022 and 2023. This includes: $45.7 million for weatherization; $7.1 million through the State Energy Program; $7.1 million through the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant Program; and $4.4 million to prevent outages and make the power grid more resilient. Additional grid funding will be made available in the coming months.
- Resilience: In the last decade, Maryland has experienced 33 extreme weather events, costing the state up to $5 billion in damages. To date, approximately $157.1 million has been allocated to Maryland for infrastructure resilience in 2022 and 2023.
- Legacy Pollution Cleanup: To date, approximately $4.8 million has been allocated to Maryland in 2022 and 2023 for capping orphaned oil and gas wells and reclaiming abandoned mine lands and $500,000 has been allocated to cleaning up Superfund and brownfield sites.
Economic Progress Across MarylandWhite House.gov. 01/30/2023.
Under President Biden, we’re building an economy from the bottom up and middle out, including creating good-paying jobs, record small business growth, and spurring new manufacturing investments across Maryland.
- Maryland’s unemployment rate is at 4% – down from 6.3% two years earlier. The state has added over 127,000 total jobs since the President took office.
- Over the last two years, over 206,000 new businesses have been started in the State of Maryland. In fact, 2021 had the most new businesses started in Maryland on record – 17 percent higher than the previous record.
- Across Maryland, companies have announced investments and expansions including Catalent (October 2021) which announced a $230 million expansion project in in Harmans, Maryland, creating more than 700 new jobs; Orsted committed (August 2022) to investing nearly $735 million to create thousands of jobs; and United Safety Technology Inc announced plans (March 2022) for a $350 million medical manufacturing facility at Tradepoint Atlantic in Baltimore County, which the company expects will create 2,000 jobs.
Progress on RailWhite House.gov. 01/30/2023.
President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law makes the largest investment in passenger rail since the creation of Amtrak, with a $66 billion investment in rail. This includes:
- $22 billion directly to Amtrak, including $16 billion for the National Network and $6 billion for the Northeast Corridor;
- $24 billion in competitive grants for major capital projects on the Northeast Corridor;
- $12 billion in competitive grants for passenger rail expansion outside the Northeast Corridor;
- $5 billion for the Consolidated Rail Infrastructure and Safety Improvements Program, which provides competitive grants for freight and passenger rail safety and efficiency projects; and
- $3 billion in competitive grants for railroad crossing elimination projects.
In 2022, the Biden Administration announced $233 million in grants to upgrade intercity passenger rail service across the country. These investments will help replace bridges and tunnels along the Northeast Corridor, many of which are over 100 years old. Grants were also awarded to improve rail infrastructure in California, Michigan, and improving Chicago Union Station.
On November 30, 2022, the Federal Railroad Administration granted $4.3 billion to Amtrak, which represents the first year of the $22 billion in direct funding to Amtrak provided in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. These funds will be used to modernize the intercity passenger rail network, most immediately funding improvements to several Amtrak-served stations to meet Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards, as well as fleet upgrades. With $22 billion in infrastructure investments over five years, Amtrak will increase accessibility at more than 280 Amtrak-served stations across the country. Funding will also be used to replace Amtrak’s existing fleet of over 1,000 railcars and locomotives with accessible, comfortable, state-of-the-art equipment. Portions of the new fleet will enter service in 2023, and over 525 new railcars and locomotives will begin service by the end of the decade. Amtrak debuted the design of the new “Airo” railcars in late 2022.
On November 15, the Federal Railroad Administration also announced its Northeast Corridor Inventory, outlining major backlog projects that will get funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, including the Hudson River Tunnel and East River Tunnel in New York, the Connecticut River Bridge, and the Susquehanna River Bridge and Frederick Douglas Tunnel in Maryland. The Administration expects that the $24 billion available for the Northeast Corridor will be sufficient to fund all major backlog projects and provide funding toward some additional improvement projects that reduce travel time, upgrade stations and facilities, or provide other enhancements. In late December 2022, the Federal Railroad Administration opened applications for the first $9 billion in Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding for Northeast Corridor infrastructure projects under the Fed-State Partnership Program. Only projects on the Northeast Corridor Project Inventory published in November may be submitted for funding under this Notice of Funding Opportunity. The Frederick Douglass Tunnel could receive as much as $4.7 billion from this pool of competitive funding.
In December, the Federal Railroad Administration also opened applications for the first $2.3 billion in Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funding for intercity passenger rail projects outside of the Northeast Corridor under the Fed-State Partnership National Program.White House.gov. 01/30/2023.
2023 will be a year in which major rail projects receive their first funding, in many instances, after waiting decades for federal funding.
President Biden’s remarks are scheduled for 2:45 p.m. D.C., time.
President Biden has tweeted…
At 8:55 a.m. CA., time President Biden has not tweeted so far for Monday.