Cities Ready to Rebuild as Infrastructure Bill Signed into Law

November 15, 2021

(Photo by Kenny Holston/Getty Images)

NLC leadership attend White House signing ceremony for historic bipartisan bill.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Monday, November 15, National League of Cities (NLC) CEO and Executive Director Clarence E. Anthony, President Kathy Manness, Vice President Vince Williams, and Second Vice President Victoria Woodards attended the White House signing ceremony for the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA).

“After years of advocacy, we were proud to stand with President Biden today for the signing of this historic infrastructure legislation on behalf of cities, towns and villages across the country. Today’s infrastructure bill means transformative investments in transportation, broadband and water are heading to communities of all sizes. As cities rebuild and recover, these funds will increase equity, create safer transportation, build resilient structures and strengthen our economy,” said Clarence E. Anthony, NLC CEO and Executive Director.

“We like to say that South Carolina is full of smiling faces and beautiful places – but our roads can be improved. Today marks a turning point for our nation’s infrastructure, with historic investments going to cities, towns, and villages to support rebuilding and recovering our communities. We look forward to working with former Mayor Mitch Landrieu, who understands the local perspective, to help communities make the most of this opportunity,” said NLC President Councilmember Kathy Manness of Lexington, South Carolina.

“Local leaders know infrastructure is a job worth doing. This historic funding is not just a game changer – it is a testament of government keeping a promise to the American people. It is life-changing for communities across the country who face long lists of overdue projects and are ready to build and strengthen the infrastructure that keeps Americans and our economy moving,” said NLC First Vice President Vince Williams of Union City, Georgia.

“Local leaders know their communities’ needs better than anyone. We know what roads and bridges need to be rebuilt, which neighborhoods need broadband funding to close the digital divide, and what to do to support small businesses. Today, Congress and President Biden listened to those needs and provided robust federal investments in cities, towns, and villages. With the right federal support and investments, we can uplift our communities and create sustained recovery,” said NLC Second Vice President Mayor Victoria Woodards of Tacoma, Washington.

The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act includes $550 billion in new federal investments in America’s infrastructure, adding an estimated two million jobs per year to the national economy. The bill includes:

  • Broadband: The largest-ever one-time federal investment in broadband, weighing in at $65 billion, including programs for broadband infrastructure buildout, affordability and digital equity.  
  • Transportation: More than $100 billion in competitive funding from USDOT programs across transportation modes with new programs in road safety, rail and more that cities can access.
  • Water: $11.7 billion each for the Clean Water and Drinking Water State Revolving Funds.
  • Climate Change and Resilience: $550 million for the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant.
  • Financing: Includes measures that would allow local governments to issue tax-exempt bonds to finance rural broadband projects; help reduce the cost of commercializing the purchase and installation of carbon capture, utilization, and storage equipment; and increases the current cap of tax-exempt highway or surface freight transfer facility bonds.

Local leaders now look forward to working with Congress to advance the Build Back Better Act, which, along with today’s infrastructure bill, paves the way for sustained recovery with essential investments in workforce development, housing and technical assistance.

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The National League of Cities (NLC) is the voice of America’s cities, towns and villages, representing more than 200 million people. NLC works to strengthen local leadership, influence federal policy and drive innovative solutions. Stay connected with NLC on FacebookTwitterLinkedIn and Instagram.