Yesterday House Speaker John Boehner announced that H.R. 7, The American Energy & Infrastructure Jobs Act, will be put to a vote in “the coming weeks and months”. H.R. 7 would use revenue from expanded domestic oil drilling to fund infrastructure projects. According to the Speaker the bill “will link expanded American energy production to high-priority infrastructure projects like roads and bridges in order to create more jobs.”
According to a summary of H.R. 7 on the Speaker’s website, the bill would:
- “Fund High-Priority Projects. The bill would remove federal requirements that currently force states to spend highway money on non-highway activities, helping to ensure that our nation’s highways and bridges are repaired and properly maintained and that federal dollars are spent on our most critical infrastructure needs.
- Speed Up Bureaucratic Approvals. The bill would speed up bureaucratic approvals and streamline the project delivery process – the real hurdles delaying improvements to highways, bridges, and other projects – with reforms like concurrent review that will cut the project review and permitting process in half.
- Eliminate Needless Programs. The bill would eliminate and consolidate nearly 70 surface transportation programs that are either duplicative or not in the federal interest.
- Embrace More Private-Sector Involvement. The bill would reform financing programs to increase private sector involvement in infrastructure.
- Enhance Safety Programs. The bill would strengthen safety programs and gives states more flexibility to develop innovative safety initiatives that save lives.
- Include No Earmarks. Like every bill passed through the House since the American people entrusted Republicans with a majority, this one will have no earmarks in it.”
For more on H.R. 7 see the Library of Congress’s website.