US News Update : White House cuts price tag of infrastructure bill to $1.7 trln

Insight Online News

Washington, May 22 : In a counterproposal to Senate Republicans on Friday, the White House lowered the overall price tag of President Joe Biden’s $2.3-trillion infrastructure plan to $1.7 trillion.

The original proposal, dubbed the American Jobs Plan, includes $621 billion to improve transportation infrastructure, such as roads, bridges and airports, $300 billion to revitalize US manufacturers and small businesses, $213 billion for housing infrastructure, as well as $180 billion to boost the country’s research and development, Xinhua reported.

Biden’s proposal is widely welcomed by Democrats, but Republicans have lashed out at the plan, arguing that it consists of numerous “far-left demands,” and is not targeting actual infrastructure.

The counterproposal shifts investment in research and development, supply chains, manufacturing and small businesses, out of the negotiations and into other proposed legislations, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said at a press briefing Friday.

Meanwhile, the latest plan also lowers Biden’s request on transportation infrastructure and digital infrastructure, which includes funding for broadband, Psaki said, noting that the revised figure would come closer to what was proposed by Republican Senators.

Calling it a “reasonable” counteroffer, Psaki said differences remain between the two sides, urging Republicans to boost their offer to spend more in power sector, workforce training, care economy and transportation infrastructure.

The press secretary reiterated that the administration would not raise taxes for people making less than $400,000, through gas taxes or user fees, arguing that the extraordinarily wealthy and corporations “can afford a modest increase” in taxes to pay for middle class jobs.

IANS

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