education

Despite a proclamation over the weekend from Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.V., that he was a “no” on the existing version of Build Back Better Act legislation, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said in a Dear Colleague letter today that he plans to keep working on the reconciliation legislation until they “get something done.”

The Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee voted Dec. 15 to approve the White House’s nomination of Alan Davidson to head the Commerce Department’s National Telecommunications and Information Association (NTIA).

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After more than two months of angling and dealmaking, the House of Representatives voted to approve the $1 trillion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act – also known as the Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework – on November 5, sending the bill along with its $2 billion in cyber funding and $65 billion in broadband appropriations to President Biden’s desk for final approval.

Rep. Gerry Connolly, D-Va. – long a prime mover in Congress for improving Federal IT operations – said at MeriTalk’s State Tech Vision virtual program on September 15 that he plans to push two key pieces of legislation this year that aim to help state and local governments improve their own IT capabilities.

Crumbling bridges and leaky levees. Buckling roadways. Unsafe water pipes. Inadequate public transit. The list of U.S. infrastructure failings is both broad and deep. The United States is paying only about half of its necessary infrastructure bill, and the total investment gap has grown from $2.1 trillion over 10 years, to a current figure of nearly $2.59 trillion over 10 years, according to the American Society of Civil Engineers. As a result, local government leaders face staggering infrastructure requirements that local tax revenues cannot fulfill.

Infrastructure week finally arrived in Washington, D.C. with the Senate’s approval of the $1 trillion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act on Tuesday morning. The bill – whose main tech-related titles include $65 billion for broadband and around $2 billion for cybersecurity – cleared the Senate by a vote of 69-30.

Following a pair of votes on the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act over the weekend, the bipartisan infrastructure measure is nearing the finish line in the Senate. The bill is currently on track for a final vote in the Senate on Tuesday morning.

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