What the $1 Trillion Infrastructure Bill Means for the Trucking Industry
A $1 trillion infrastructure package that includes billions of dollars for roads and bridges and creates a program that will bring younger drivers into the trucking industry was approved November 5 in the U.S. House of Representatives.
According to ATA, the bill will provide a 38 percent increase in funding for surface transportation systems over the next five years. The increase would amount to nearly $500 billion in new funding, including $347.5 billion for highways and $37 billion for bridges. The measure advances as funding authority for the FAST Act, the nation’s underlying highway law, is set to expire December 3. Under the legislation, the FAST Act received a five-year extension.
The bill will also create a training and apprenticeship program for drivers younger than 21 to drive Class 8 trucks in interstate commerce. The Developing Responsible Individuals for a Vibrant Economy, or DRIVE, Safe Act, was sponsored by Sen. Todd Young (R-Ind.) and included in the legislation.
“We are very pleased that this bill contains a pilot version of the DRIVE Safe Act,” said MTA President John Hausladen. “In 2015, the MTA created and shared its vision for a younger driver pilot program that is very close the provisions contained in this bill. This is a huge win for the industry, and the hard working members of our MTA Younger Driver Project Team.”
Stay tuned for a more detailed review of the infrastructure bill to come.