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Infrastructure bill moves through congress, W.Va. Senators react to $3.5 trillion budget resolution

Published: Jul. 29, 2021 at 5:55 PM EDT
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CHARLESTON, W.Va (WDTV) - As the bipartisan infrastructure bill makes its way through congress, democrats are now pushing for a $3.5 trillion budget resolution to fund social infrastructure such as child care, health care, housing, and college.

Two-thirds of senators voted Wednesday to begin debate on a bipartisan infrastructure bill.

Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) says, “the bipartisan infrastructure package-- it is very close to the package that I originally conceived in terms of physical infrastructure-- roads and bridges, airports, broadband.”

The bill invests $110 billion on America’s roads and bridges. It also invests $55 billion for clean water infrastructure-- an issue that West Virginia Delegates Evan Hansen and John Williams say directly affects West Virginia. “We’re losing population in West Virginia,” said Del. Evan Hansen (D- Monongalia, 51). “We have an urgent need to diversify our economy and attract people and businesses to West Virginia and we can’t do that without secure access to clean drinking water. That’s one of the most fundamental infrastructure issues that there is.”

In addition to the physical infrastructure bill, democrats are pushing ahead with a $3.5 trillion budget resolution, which they are trying to pass without republican support. Progressive democrats in the House say they will not vote for the infrastructure bill unless the senate also passes the budget bill. However, some moderate democrats, like Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) think the infrastructure bill and the budget resolution should be separate.

“Both bills should be taken on their own merits, so they should be separated. To hook one or link one to the other-- a quid pro quo is the wrong way to approach any bills,” explained Sen. Manchin.

Both Senators Capito and Manchin want the bipartisan infrastructure bill passed before the senate takes its five week recess beginning Aug. 9.

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