Before leaving for the July 4th holiday, the House of Representatives passed their $1.5 trillion infrastructure investment bill (the Moving Forward Act, H.R. 2). AGC’s statement on the passage of H.R. 2, is linked HERE.
A summary of the investments in the Moving Forward Act is substantial, but the bill also includes untenable policies added during the largely partisan legislative process. Those policies are highly unlikely to advance through the Republican-controlled Senate, which will not consider this infrastructure package. The Senate is expected to consider targeted, more modest infrastructure investment—absent such policies—when it puts forth its pandemic relief bill by the end of July.
Passage of the bill in the House is a necessary step in the process of moving highway reauthorization forward in congress. The Senate moved forward on their package in 2019 before the start of the COVID pandemic policies that severely impacted sales and use tax revenues for local, state, and federal coffers. Now that the House has moves its bill, joint discussions between the House Senate and the White House can begin to craft a final package for consideration.
We are still hearing that revenues for state and local governments to address the losses resulting from stay at home orders are still very much on the table for the next COVID response bill. This will be discussed by congress in July, but the larger infrastructure bill itself will likely not move forward until late summer.
It is important to note, as we see the House and Senate move legislation like the HEROES act or the Moving Forward Act, that it is a necessary part of the federal process. While some pieces of that legislation will move forward this year, many of the policies being pushed by both houses, from both sides of the aisle, are intended to lay the groundwork for debate after the election.