Largest public investment in climate change mitigation and American infrastructure in a century
Bill also includes Hickenlooper-authored provisions on electric vehicles, broadband, RTD & marijuana research, along with billions for Colorado
Washington, D.C. — Today, U.S. Senator John Hickenlooper celebrated the final passage of the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which contains several Hickenlooper-authored provisions including his first bill to pass Congress since his election, the RECHARGE Act. Hickenlooper was part of a bipartisan group of 22 senators who negotiated and wrote the $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill, which passed the Senate in August.
“This is American democracy at its best. We’ve just passed the biggest climate bill in U.S. history and the biggest infrastructure investment since the New Deal,” said Hickenlooper. “While there’s more to come, today America showed we can work together.”
Hickenlooper’s RECHARGE Act will make it more affordable to drive an electric vehicle by having states review utility rates for EV charging.
In addition to the RECHARGE Act, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Actincludes several other provisions authored by Hickenlooper, including:
- A national standard to prevent marijuana-impaired driving: Hickenlooper’s amendment requires the federal government to recommend ways for researchers to access marijuana samples and study how marijuana impairs driving.
- Returning RTD’s deposit on Union Station loan: Hickenlooper’s provision would require the Department of Transportation to quickly return $28.9 million, plus interest, for a deposit that RTD made on a federal loan related to Denver’s Union Station.
- $65 billion to ensure every American has high-speed internet: As part of the bipartisan group, Hickenlooper helped write the broadband section of the legislation. This investment will help close the digital divide and lower costs for consumers.
Other key provisions for Colorado include:
Western Water Infrastructure:
- $3.2 billion for aging infrastructure
- $1 billion for water recycling, including $450 million for large water recycling projects
- $1 billion for rural water and $500 million for dam safety
- $300 million for the Drought Contingency Plan, including $50 million for Upper Basin States
- $400 million for WaterSMART, including $100 million for natural infrastructure projects
- $100 million for cooperative watershed management, $250 million for aquatic ecosystem restoration program, and $100 million for watershed projects
- $50 million for Colorado River endangered species recovery and conservation programs
- $110 billion for roads and bridges, which would help repair 481 Colorado bridges and over 3,600 miles of Colorado highway in poor condition
- $25 billion for airport improvements
- $39 billion to modernize public transit
- $66 billion for passenger and freight rail investments, including $16 billion specifically for Amtrak
Climate Change Mitigation and Clean Energy:
· $73 billion for transmission lines, grid reliability, carbon capture and direct air capture, clean hydrogen, energy efficiency, and other energy innovation priorities
· $43 billion for wildfire and drought resiliency, weatherization, flood mitigation, and cybersecurity for critical infrastructure
· $7.5 billion for the first-ever federal investment in a national charging network for electric vehicles
· $2.5 billion for zero-emission buses
Drinking Water and Pollution Remediation:
- $21 billion to address legacy pollution, including Superfund sites and abandoned wells, and a new program to clean up abandoned hardrock mines
- $55 billion for drinking water infrastructure updates and lead pipe removal, including $3.5 billion for Tribal access to clean water