Connecticut set to rake in billions of dollars on infrastructure bill


HARTFORD, Connecticut (AP) – Connecticut is set to receive billions of dollars in additional federal transportation funding for rail and bus projects, bridge and road repairs, reduction efforts carbon emissions, new electric vehicle charging stations and other initiatives under the two-party $ 1,000 billion project. infrastructure bill that was approved by the US Senate on Tuesday and is now awaiting a decision from the House of Representatives.

The state, which has struggled with aging infrastructure problems for decades, is also expected to receive huge sums for renovating airports and ports, expanding high-speed internet service, improving telephone lines. electrical transmission and storm resistance efforts.

“This action will make a huge difference in the lives of everyone in Connecticut, ordinary people who want to get to work, be with their families, go to the beach,” said US Senator Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn ., referring to the massive bill which was adopted by 69 votes to 30.

The plan that authorized the Senate includes more than $ 5.38 billion for state transportation projects over the next five years. Connecticut will also be eligible to apply for some of the more than $ 100 billion in competitive federal transportation grants. The state is to provide matching funds, money that will be generated by Connecticut’s new freeway charges on heavy trucks.

These grants cover a wide range of projects, from reducing accidents and fatalities, especially for cyclists and pedestrians, to eliminating dangers at level crossings. Connecticut officials said the state is in a good position to receive federal grants for climate change and other initiatives, given that there are already projects and plans underway.

The massive infrastructure bill also includes $ 30 billion in competitive grants to the Northeast Corridor Commission for rail projects across the Northeast, including Connecticut. The Senate approval comes nearly two months after the administration of Democratic Gov. Ned Lamont unveiled an $ 8 billion to $ 10 billion “Time for Connecticut” plan that aims to cut commuter train times from Connecticut to New York at least 25 minutes by 2035.

“I’ve built my career in rail and we haven’t seen a federal investment in passenger rail like this since Amtrak was created,” said Joseph Giulietti, commissioner for the Connecticut Department of Transportation, former president of Metro-North Railroad.

While part of the funding for the Infrastructure Bill is earmarked for new initiatives, existing subsidy programs are also being strengthened. US Senator Chris Murphy, D-Connecticut, said much of the massive package will be paid for with higher taxes on wealthy individuals and corporations.

“This bill is a victory simply because of the massive investment in infrastructure that will matter in Connecticut and our economy,” he said. “But it’s also a victory for the health of American democracy, because it shows that we can still do great things by coming together.”


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