A few months ago, the Senate passed and President Biden signed into law the historic Bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA). The legislation includes $550 billion in new federal investments in America’s roads and bridges, water infrastructure, climate resilience, internet, and more.
The Infrastructure bill allocates funding across the country, which means in Minnesota, we too are getting our fair share of this massive investment.
The need for action in Minnesota is clear. For decades, infrastructure in Minnesota has suffered from a systemic lack of investment. In fact, the American Society of Civil Engineers gave Minnesota a C grade on its infrastructure report card. The historic Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act will make life better for millions of Minnesota residents, create a generation of good-paying union jobs and economic growth, and position the United States to win the 21st century.
Minnesota is set to receive about $7.3 billion once Congress approves the appropriations budget for the 2022 fiscal year.
Here’s what’s coming our way in 2022:
Repair and rebuild our roads and bridges
Under the IIJA, Minnesota expects to receive $4.5 billion to improve and develop highways and $302 million for bridge replacement and repairs. This funding is part of the single most significant investment in repairing and reconstructing our nation’s bridges since the construction of the interstate highway system. With 661 bridges and over 4,986 miles of highway across our state, this money is essential for keeping our drivers safe and keeping Minnesota, and the United States, a leader in development, innovation, and safety.
Improve sustainable transportation options
Communities of color are twice as likely to take public transportation, and many of these communities lack sufficient public transit options. Additionally, the transportation sector in the United States is now the largest single source of greenhouse gas emissions. The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act seeks to improve our public transportation systems equitably while keeping climate at the center of the work.
The Minnesota Department of Transportation receives the largest portion of Minnesota’s IIJA funds; $5.45 billion. The money specifically aims to expand public transit options replacing thousands of deficient transit vehicles, including buses, with clean, zero-emission vehicles, and improving accessibility for the elderly and people with disabilities.
Additionally, airports in Minnesota expect $297 million to keep us connected to the rest of the country and world and modernize our airline systems.
Help connect every Minnesotan to reliable high-speed internet
Broadband internet is necessary for Americans to do their jobs, to participate equally in school learning, health care, and to stay connected. Yet 12 percent of Minnesota households do not have an internet subscription, and 1.5 percent of Minnesotans live in areas where, under the FCC’s benchmark, there is no broadband infrastructure.
Minnesota will see $100 million in broadband support, which will help lower prices for internet service and help close the digital divide so that more can afford internet access.
And so much more!
This is only the beginning; our allocation includes additional funding for investments in climate resilience, electronic vehicle charging stations, manufacturing jobs, railways, and clean drinking water.
Thank you President Biden for such bold vision and all of our progressive Minnesota leaders in Congress who helped make this bill a reality.