TEXAS — As the nearly $1 trillion infrastructure bill makes its way through Congress, many are asking how the bill will impact Texas.
The Senate could vote on the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act sometime this week, and it would be the largest long-term investment in the country's infrastructure and competitiveness in nearly a century.
The Biden Administration just released information about estimated investments in Texas should the bill be passed in four specific areas. The White House claims the bill will generate jobs, stimulate economic growth and improve quality of life for Texas residents.
Rebuilding and repairing highways
According to the Biden administration, there are 818 bridges and over 19,400 miles of highway in poor condition in Texas. Since 2011, commute times have increased by 11.4% across the state and, on average, each driver pays $709 per year in costs due to driving on roads in need of repair.
Based on that data, Texas could receive an estimated $26.9 billion for federal-aid highway apportioned programs and $537 million for bridge replacement and repairs over five years.
Texas 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 would deliver substantial economic benefits to communities.
Texans who take public transportation spend an extra 80.8% of their time commuting and non-White households are 2.7 times more likely to commute on public transportation. However, 12% of trains and other transit vehicles in the state are past useful life.
Based on formula funding alone, Texas would expect to receive $3.3 billion over five years to improve public transportation options across the state. 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.
High-speed internet access
It’s almost impossible for Texans to do their jobs, to participate equally in school learning, or to receive depndable health care without reliable internet. However, 14% of Texas households do not have an internet subscription and 4% of Texans live in areas where, under the FCC’s benchmark, there is no broadband infrastructure.
Under the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, Texas would receive a minimum allocation of $100 million to help provide broadband coverage across the state, including providing access to the at least 1,058,000 Texans who currently lack it. It would also make 29% of Texans eligible for the Affordability Connectivity Benefit, which will help low-income families afford an internet connection.
Electric vehicle investment
The U.S. market share of plug-in electric vehicle sales is only one-third the size of the Chinese market. The bill would invest $7.5 billion to build out the first-ever national network of electric vehicle chargers in the United States.
Under the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, Texas would expect to receive an estimated $408 million over five years to support the expansion of an electric vehicle charging network in the state. Texas will also have the opportunity to apply for the $2.5 billion in grant funding dedicated to electric vehicle charging in the bill.