President Biden visited Philly Shipyard, where union workers are building a new offshore wind vessel as part of continued manufacturing boom—while Republicans in Congress voted to repeal the Inflation Reduction Act and continue to try to block clean energy progress. This is a fact sheet from the White House on how Bidenomics is boosting clean energy manufacturing for offshore wind, which is creating well-paying union jobs in America that cannot be outsourced, while advancing the transition to a clean-energy economy to stem the existential impacts of climate change—Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
President Biden’s economic agenda—Bidenomics— is fueling America’s clean energy future, creating American-made products in American factories with American workers, and attracting more than $500 billion in private sector manufacturing and clean energy investments, including in the offshore wind industry. President Biden visited Philadelphia, Pennsylvania for a steel-cutting ceremony at the Philly Shipyard for the first offshore wind vessel of its kind to be Made in America and Jones Act compliant, employing over 1,000 workers across nine unions to build the vessel, using steel plates made by the United Steelworkers in Indiana, and generating an estimated $125 million of U.S. economic activity each year. This project is another example of how Bidenomics is growing the economy from the middle out and the bottom up.
Under President Biden’s leadership, the American offshore wind industry is rapidly expanding—creating good-paying union jobs across the manufacturing, shipbuilding, and construction sectors. Since President Biden took office, companies have announced 18 offshore wind shipbuilding projects as well as investments of nearly $3.5 billion across 12 manufacturing facilities and 13 ports to strengthen the American offshore wind supply chain, representing thousands of new jobs. New data released shows there are more than 4,100 companies in all 50 states that are looking to support the U.S. offshore wind industry, up 54% since President Biden signed the Inflation Reduction Act.
President Biden also announced the first-ever Gulf of Mexico offshore wind lease sale. This is the latest in a broad set of actions by the Biden-Harris Administration to build 30 gigawatts of offshore wind projects by 2030—enough to power more than 10 million homes with clean energy. A key pillar of Bidenomics, President Biden’s Investing in America agenda will help create offshore wind jobs across the country, including through tax credits from the Inflation Reduction Act to support Made in America wind turbines and ships.
However, if Republicans in Congress had their way, their states would have lost out on billions of dollars in investments, jobs, and opportunity. In Pennsylvania alone, companies have committed to invest approximately $2 billion in manufacturing and clean energy investments since President Biden took office. Yet nearly every Republican Member of the House voted again to overturn the Inflation Reduction Act’s clean energy tax credits in April 2023—doubling down on their opposition at a time when manufacturers were investing in their state.
Bidenomics is Catalyzing America’s Clean Energy and Offshore Wind Industry
As part of President Biden’s historic actions to build a clean energy economy, the Biden-Harris Administration has jumpstarted an American offshore wind industry that will strengthen the nation’s energy security, make the power grid more reliable while lowering energy costs, and reduce dangerous climate pollution. The Biden-Harris Administration’s actions to advance responsible offshore wind deployment are creating opportunities up and down the supply chain. A report released today by the Business Network for Offshore Wind shows the immense growth of the U.S. offshore wind industry since President Biden took office, with the Inflation Reduction Act catalyzing further progress:
Since January 2021, investments in the U.S. offshore wind industry have quadrupled from $5 billion to $21.6 billion, including growth of $7.7 billion since President Biden signed the Inflation Reduction Act. These totals reflect investments across specific project lease areas as well as the supply chain, port and transmission infrastructure, and workforce development needed to support the industry.
More than 4,100 companies across all 50 states have joined a supplier registry to express interest in providing components and services to the offshore wind industry—169% growth since President Biden took office and up 54% since he signed the Inflation Reduction Act.
The U.S. offshore wind industry now includes nearly 1,500 contracts for work in the growing American market, growth of 272% since President Biden took office and up 47% since he signed the Inflation Reduction Act, with 90% of these contracts going to companies that are either U.S. headquartered or have a U.S. presence.
This nationwide growth reflects jobs up and down the offshore wind supply chain and across the country. For example, today’s steel-cutting ceremony at the Philly Shipyard launches the construction of the Acadia, the first-ever Jones Act compliant vessel for offshore wind subsea rock installation—a contract that was announced as a direct result of the Administration’s clean energy agenda. This vessel will be crewed by American mariners and take rocks from American quarries to protect the foundations of offshore wind projects that produce American clean energy. Additional supply chain progress includes:
New and expanded ports and manufacturing facilities: Today the Department of Energy (DOE) published an updated map of offshore wind supply chain investments announced just since President Biden took office, including nearly $3.5 billion across 12 manufacturing facilities and 13 ports—representing major new economic opportunities across not just the East Coast, but also in the Midwest and along the Gulf of Mexico and West Coast. Under President Biden, the Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration (MARAD) has awarded more than $100 million for port projects to support offshore wind development, through the Port Infrastructure Development Program expanded by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.
Vessel construction across multiple states: Since President Biden took office, companies have also announced investments to build 18 offshore wind vessels across states including Florida, Louisiana, New York, Massachusetts, Michigan, Rhode Island, and Wisconsin. Last year, MARAD announced the designation of offshore wind vessels as Vessels of National Interest for priority consideration under the Federal Ship Financing Program. Since then, MARAD has received and advanced reviews of applications for a variety of offshore wind vessel types.
Steel manufacturing boosts to support offshore wind industry:Recent announcements include an investment of $145 million to upgrade a steel facility in Mingo Junction, Ohio—following previously announced upgrades of $260 million for a steel plate mill in Baytown, Texas—to serve the offshore wind industry and the broader clean energy industry; a new advanced component steel facility in Baltimore that will construct and assemble offshore wind components using steel prefabricated at Maryland facilities; and an additional contract for a facility in western New York to provide specialized structural steelwork for the Revolution Wind and South Fork Wind projects.
Earlier this year at the International Offshore Wind Partnering Forum in Baltimore, White House National Climate Advisor Ali Zaidi outlined ten ways the Administration is making progress toward the goal of deploying 30 gigawatts of offshore wind energy by 2030. Recent progress made by the Biden-Harris Administration toward this goal includes:
New Lease Areas: Today the Department of the Interior (DOI) is issuing the final sale notice for the first-ever offshore wind lease sale in the Gulf of Mexico, which will take place on August 29. This historic sale—with enough clean energy potential to power almost 1.3 million homes—will include one lease area of 102,480 acres offshore Lake Charles, Louisiana, and two lease areas totaling nearly 200,000 acres offshore Galveston, Texas. This sale will follow the Administration’s offshore wind sales in the New York Bight, Carolina Long Bay, and northern and central California, as well as yesterday’s announcement that DOI’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) has completed another step in reviewing a potential offshore wind research lease in the Gulf of Maine.
Efficient and Responsible Permitting: Earlier this week, BOEM completed environmental analysis of the proposed Revolution Wind project offshore Rhode Island. If approved, it could power more than 300,000 homes with clean energy. This permitting milestone follows BOEM’s final construction approval earlier this month for the nation’s third large-scale offshore wind project, Ocean Wind 1 off the coast of New Jersey, which is expected to create more than 3,000 good-paying jobs. Other recent progress includes draft Environmental Impact Statements for six additional projects: Empire Wind, Sunrise Wind, Coastal Virginia Wind (CVOW), New England Wind, SouthCoast Wind, and Atlantic Shores South. In total, BOEM and cooperating agencies are on track to complete reviews of at least 16 project plans by 2025, representing more than 27 gigawatts of clean energy. The Administration is holding projects to high standards for community engagement and environmental protection, including work by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) to ensure protection of coastal and marine resources, and requiring offshore wind projects to adopt extensive monitoring and mitigation measures that reduce the potential for impacts to protected species.
Construction Milestones: The nation’s first two large-scale offshore wind projects, approved by the Biden-Harris Administration, are both being built by union labor and achieved “steel in the water” by starting to install foundations last month. These projects will provide a wide range of benefits. For example, Vineyard Wind offshore Massachusetts will create enough clean electricity to power 400,000 homes, save customers $1.4 billion on their utility bills over 20 years, and reduce climate pollution by more than 1.5 million metric tons each year—the equivalent of taking 325,000 gas cars off the road—while creating 3,600 good-paying jobs. South Fork Wind offshore New York is using high-tech cables made in Charleston, South Carolina at a new factory, an electrical substation engineered in Kansas and fabricated in Texas, and a service operations vessel being built at shipyards in Louisiana, Mississippi, and Florida, with components sourced from across 34 states.
President Biden’s Investing in America Agenda is unleashing a manufacturing and clean energy boom and accelerating the production of affordable electric vehicles. The White House provided this fact sheet:
As part of President Biden’s goal of having 50 percent of all new vehicle sales be electric by 2030, the White House is announcing the first set of public and private commitments to support America’s historic transition to electric vehicles (EV) under the EV Acceleration Challenge. These commitments are part of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda to spur domestic manufacturing, strengthen supply chains, boost U.S. competitiveness and create good-paying jobs. Because of President Biden’s leadership and historic investments, electric vehicle sales have tripled and the number of publicly available charging ports has grown by over 40 percent since he took office. There are now more than three million EVs on the road and over 132,000 public EV chargers across the country.
President Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act adds and expands tax credits for purchases of new and used EVs—helping bring the benefits of clean energy to communities across the nation. The law also provides incentives to electrify heavy-duty vehicles like clean school buses, and includes support for the installation of residential, commercial, and municipal EV charging infrastructure. These incentives complement investments from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and other federal initiatives that are spurring the domestic manufacturing of EVs and batteries and the development of a national EV charging network that provides access to low income and disadvantaged communities.
These incentives will lower the cost of EVs and EV charging infrastructure; increase consumer demand and competition; promote equity and inclusion; and accelerate the growth of the EV market. The White House announced the EV Acceleration Challenge to bring a clean, safe, affordable, and reliable transportation future to Americans even faster.
Today, the Federal Government, as well as a number of companies and nonprofits including Prologis, First Student, Hertz, Amazon, Google, Rewiring America, and others, are announcing new commitments to expand EV fleets, increase consumer education, and grow the availability of EV charging.
Today, the Federal Government is announcing:
Federal agencies have already acquired 13,000 light- and medium-duty zero emission vehicles (ZEVs) in FY23—about four times the number of ZEVs acquired in FY22. President Biden’s Federal Sustainability Plan requires federal agencies to transition the largest fleet in the world to all electric by acquiring 100 percent light-duty ZEVs annually by 2027 and acquiring 100 percent medium- and heavy-duty ZEVs annually by 2035.
Federal agencies are committing to deploy an additional 24,000 charging stations at Federal facilities by the next fiscal year, adding to the more than 5,000 charging stations already installed at Federal facilities nationwide.
The Department of Energy’s Alternative Fuel Data Center is planning to add two new features to its Station Locator Tool that will help consumers charge their EVs quickly, affordably and conveniently. The tool will soon offer:
Charging cost: The cost to charge an EV at an individual charging station.
Charging speed: The charging speed or power output at the charger port level.
ACCELERATING THE EV TRANSITION
The Biden-Harris Administration’s Investing in America agenda has spurred public and private sector commitments to accelerate the transition to electric vehicles. State and local governments are also leveraging federal funds to expand electrification of their vehicle fleets. These announcements build on the EV charging network expansion and manufacturing announcements highlighted by the White House in February, which will add more than 100,000 public chargers across the country. Announcements being spotlighted today fall into four categories: Consumer Education and Support, Tools and Resources, EV Fleet Expansion, and Community Charging: Commercial and Multifamily:
First Student, a major supplier of school bus services, is committing to transition 30,000 fossil fuel-powered school buses to electric school buses by 2035.
CirbaSolutions, a battery materials and management company, is committing to process end-of-life batteries and Gigafactory manufacturing scrap, creating enough battery-materials to equip 1,000,000 EVs by 2028.
Waymo, an autonomous driving technology company, is committing to deploy the all-electric Jaguar I-PACE across all of its ride-hailing service territories this spring and retire its previous generation platform.
Amazon is announcing it has rolled out over 3,000 electric delivery vehicles as part of its commitment to bring 100,000 electric delivery vehicles to the road by 2030.
Trane Technologies, a company focused on efficient and sustainable climate solutions for buildings, homes and transportation, is committing to transition 100 percent of its global fleet of more than 8,000 vehicles, including service vans and trucks, to all electric vehicles by 2030.
Community Charging: Commercial and Multifamily
Prologis, a major global developer and owner of logistics real estate with more than 3,400 properties in the US, is committing to make every new eligible Prologis development ready for EV charging and transition its U.S. maintenance vehicle fleet to 100 percent alternative fuel vehicles by 2030.
Siemens is committing to install charging stations across the U.S. at its facilities and employees’ homes to support the electric conversion of its 10,000-vehicle fleet by 2030 and to set a requirement that 10% of parking spaces include EV charging stations at all new company facility construction projects.
CALSTART, Forth, the Electrification Coalition, EVHybridNoire and peer national implementation partners are committing to launch the Charge@Work campaign and Electric Vehicle Adoption Leadership (EVAL) certification program in Fall 2023 which will engage over 50,000 employers\workplaces, representing hundreds of thousands of employees, with the end goal of catalyzing over 100,000 electric vehicle workplace charging stations.
SWTCH, an EV charging provider, is committing to expand equitable access to EV charging in underserved communities by deploying over 20,000 EV chargers, the majority of which will serve multi-family buildings, by 2024.
Rocky Mountain Institute is committing to launch a multi-family charging accelerator pilot in three states to scale multi-unit dwelling charging infrastructure financing and deployment nationwide in 2024.
Consumer Education and Support
Hertz is committing to substantially increase its electric vehicle rentals this year forecasting nearly two million EV rentals in 2023, approximately five times the number of EV rentals in 2022, and extending the electric vehicle experience to leisure and business travelers and rideshare drivers across the country.
Consumer Reports is committing to delivering expert advice and unbiased information for people who are considering whether to make the shift to an electric vehicle through its new online tool called the Electric Vehicle Savings Finder. It provides detailed, up-to-date information about federal, state, and local EV purchase incentives available to consumers, specific to where they live.
GreenLatinos,Hip Hop Caucus, Sierra Club, Clean Energy for America, Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments, Electric Transportation Community Development Corporation, National Religious Partnership for the Environment, Plug in America, Public Citizen, Union of Concerned Scientists, Electric Vehicle Association, League of Conservation Voters, Coltura, and the Natural Resources Defense Council are committing to launch Route Zero in April – a cross-country, relay style campaign highlighting the investments made in EV infrastructure and EV manufacturing around the country, focusing on how equitable EV deployment helps mitigate pollution harms.
Sierra Club, Plug in America, the Electric Vehicle Association and EVHybridNoire are committing to host more than 300 events in 2023 to celebrate the shift to electric vehicles, including the opportunity to connect with EV drivers in their own communities, ask questions, and get behind the wheel to try EVs out.
Mercedes-Benz is committing to launch “Electric Dream Days,” a new EV marketing campaign with retail events at dealerships and EV test drives in April 2023.
Tools and Resources
Rewiring America, a non-profit organization, is committing to launch an online personal electrification planner in 2023 with the initial goal of helping 100,000 homeowners and renters create roadmaps to electrify their homes and to choose electric vehicles and home chargers.
Google is committing to provide up-to-date information about availability and coverage of tax credits across eligible passenger vehicles, through a new Search tool that incorporates federal guidance to surface eligible EV tax credits, alongside other critical information.
Plug in America, a non-profit organization, is committing to reach 250,000 consumers over the next year with PlugStar.com, its online EV information and shopping tool.
Wells Fargo is releasing a new tool to support business leaders transitioning to electric vehicle fleets by modeling deployment that incorporates the cost of electrification, tax credits, cost savings, and environmental benefits.
The American Public Transportation Association and the Edison Electric Institute are committing to develop and distribute a new resource for transit agencies to streamline their efforts to electrify their bus fleets.
The EV Acceleration Challenge is accepting submissions on a rolling basis. The White House will be highlighting additional commitments soon including many more that were already submitted.
This fact sheet from the White House outlines the top 15 highlights from two years of recovery under the American Rescue Plan:
Led to the Strongest Jobs Recovery on Record: When President Biden came into office, there was tremendous economic uncertainty. Unemployment was at 6.1% when the American Rescue Plan (ARP) passed. It was expected to average 5% in 2022. With the passage of ARP, unemployment averaged 3.6% in 2022 and fell to 3.4% at the beginning of 2023.
ARP Drove the Strongest 2-year job growth ever: Over 12 million jobs have been added since President Biden took office – the largest 2-year total in US history and more jobs in two years than in any previous administration’s full year term.
Powered the Fastest Recovery in the World: After the American Rescue Plan passed, the US recovered significantly faster than our G7 Peers – with 5.9% growth in 2021 – while our inflation is in the middle of the pack and slower than other countries that did significantly less to help their economies recover.
Powered the Most Equitable Recovery in Memory: In past recessions, persistent high long-term and youth unemployment as well as high foreclosures of evictions led to long term harms – “scarring” for millions of Americans and hard, long roads back for Black and Hispanic Americans.
President Biden’s Rescue Plan ensured that didn’t happen this time:
Historic drops in Black and Hispanic Unemployment: With the strong recovery powered by ARP, Black unemployment saw its largest 1-year drop since 1984 and is near record lows; Hispanic unemployment saw its fastest 1-year drop and reached its lowest annual rate ever in 2022. Asian American unemployment fell significantly as well – falling by more than half from its January 2021 rate.
Least scarring in any recovery in memory: The American Rescue Plan led to the fastest drop in long-term and youth unemployment ever, which both now stand at pre-pandemic levels. It kept foreclosures historically low and evictions 20% below historic averages even after the end of the CDC Eviction Moratorium.
Lowered Health Care Premiums by $800 for over 13 Million Americans: ARP lowered health care premiums – which were extended by the Inflation Reduction Act, increased eligibility to middle- income families and provided strong incentives for states to expand Medicaid through the Affordable Care Act. Result:
Saved over 13 million Americans an average of $800 a year on their health premiums.
Led to most Americans in history having health insurance
Provided health coverage to 3 million Americans who would have otherwise had no health insurance.
Provided an extra $1.5 billion in Medicaid funding to Missouri, Oklahoma, and South Dakota for Medicaid expansion coverage to over half a million people.
Gave states an easier pathway to extend Medicaid postpartum coverage for a full 12 months – ensuring access to critical care for over 438,000 women nationwide.
Largest Small Business Formation Boom in History Due ARP-Driven Strong Recovery and Small Business Investments: The Biden Administration:
Increased COVID Emergency Injury Disaster Loans to $2 million, while increasing anti-fraud controls
Reformed PPP to more equitably distribute funds to the smallest businesses.
Restaurant Revitalization Fund helped over 100,000 Restaurants, Bars, and Food Trucks stay open.
Shuttered Venues Program provided relief to 13,000 venues.
Invested a historic $10 Billion in the State Small Business Credit Initiative
This, and the strong recovery that ARP powered, led to:
A record 10.5 million new small business applications over the past 2 years
Hispanic entrepreneurs started small businesses at the highest rate in more than a decade in 2021 and 23 percent faster than pre-pandemic levels.
Asian American entrepreneurs started small businesses at the fastest rate in over a decade in 2021.
Led to Lowest Child Poverty Rate in American History: The American Rescue Plan and its expanded monthly Child Tax Credit led to:
Child Poverty nearly cut in half to lowest rate – 5.2% – ever.
Black child poverty cut by 52%, Hispanic child poverty cut by 43%, Native American child poverty cut by 51%, and dramatic drops in white and Asian child poverty — all to record lows.
~9 million children in rural areas benefited from the expanded credit.
5 million children in Veteran and Active-Duty families benefited from the expanded credit
Child Tax Credit payments were delivered reliably with the first ever monthly payment – on the 15th of each month with 90% using direct deposit.
Over 65 million children in 40 million working families received largest Child Tax Credit in history.
Historic Child Tax Credit Expansion already reached over 230,000 Puerto Rico families: Recent data shows that over 230,000 Puerto Rico households will get the expanded Child Tax Credit. 8X the number from the previous year.
Funded a Historic Vaccination Campaign: ARP provided $160 billion to support vaccination, therapeutics, testing and mitigation, PPE, and the broader COVID Response effort.
This led to:
Over 230 million Americans are fully vaccinated, up from 3.5 million when President Biden took office.
Helped Over 8 Million People Stay in Their Homes:
Emergency Rental Assistance – the first national eviction prevention policy in history – was main American Rescue Plan source of multi-month assistance to help over 8 million hard-pressed renters stay in their homes without sacrificing other basic needs.
Emergency Rental Assistance and Other ARP Housing Policies led Eviction Filings to remarkably stay 20% below historic averages in 1.5 years after end of the eviction moratorium.
Called the “the most important eviction prevention policy in American history” by Matthew Desmond, Pulitzer Prize Winner author of “Evicted” – and the “deepest investment the federal government has made in low-income renters since the nation launched its public housing system.”
HUD Emergency Housing Vouchers have already helped 47,500 households at risk of homelessness lease their own rental housing – these American Rescue Plan funded vouchers support those at risk of or experiencing homelessness or housing instability, and those fleeing domestic violence.
Helped Keep 200,000 Child Care Centers Open
American Rescue Plan Stabilization Assistance has reached 200,000 Child Care Providers – that employ 1 million child care workers – and have the capacity to serve more than 9 million children.
90% of programs reported that American Rescue Plan funds helped them stay open.
More than 8 in 10 licensed child care centers nationwide have received ARP assistance.
Benefited 30,000 rural child care programs – in most states, 97+% of rural counties received aid.
For First Time in History, Direct Relief to Every Town, City, County and State – No Matter How Big or Small, Urban or Rural So they Could Design their Own Recovery:
Before ARP, 70% of cities anticipated layoffs or major cuts in services and half of states were freezing or cutting jobs. Today, cities and states have funds to invest in major challenges – like public safety, housing, workforce, and rehiring, instead of making dramatic cuts.
ARP provided direct fiscal relief to every state & territory and 30,000 cities and towns – while previous plans reached only 154 local governments, or fewer, with direct flexible relief.
This has led to:
American Rescue Plan Led to Surge in State Revenue Growth – Powering Economic Resilience: Before ARP, state revenues were expected to grow just 3.7% in 2021, after falling in 2020. After ARP, state revenues grew by 16.6% in 2021 (record high growth) – and over 14% growth in 2022. As a result, state surpluses are powering resilience economy-wide.
Major investments in critical areas:
Over $25 billion to Jumpstart Universal Broadband Access – including Broadband Connections for 16 million students through the Emergency Connectivity Fund for schools and libraries to close the homework gap.
Over $10 billion from ARP’s State & Local Fund invested in over 3,000 workforce projects
Over $20 billion in State & Local funds invested in water infrastructure
Over $14 billion in State & Local Funds invested in housing – expanding supply, investing in homeless services, and providing 3.7 million additional households rent, mortgage, and utility relief.
One of the Largest Federal Investments in Preventing Crime, Reducing Violence, and Investing in Public Safety in History.
Over $10 billion committed to preventing crime and reducing violence, with investments by hundreds of state and local governments to avoid cuts to police budgets, hire more police officers for safe, effective, and accountable community policing, ensure first responders have the equipment they need to do their jobs, and expand evidence-based community violence intervention and prevention programs.
Toledo, Ohio used this funding to train a second cohort of new police recruits for the first time and plans for 100 new officers in the next few years; Mercer County invested in a county-wide radio system and improved its 911 system; Baltimore invested $50 million for its comprehensive violence prevention strategy, including community violence intervention programs.
That includes $1.2 billion Medicaid Mobile Crisis Intervention Services – the American Rescue Plan included $1.2 billion to fund mobile crisis intervention units staffed with mental health professionals & trained peers.
It also includes $1 billion Family Violence Prevention and Services Program to reduce domestic violence with immediate crisis intervention, health supports, and safety.
Funding School Districts Across the Nation to Reopen K-12 Schools, Support Academic Recovery, and Invest in Student Mental Health:
ARP provided critical relief to 16,000 school districts and other local education agencies to reopen safely, support academic recovery, and invest in student mental health.
Data from School District Plans show that schools are using these funds well:
Nearly 60% of funds are committed to investments like staffing, tutoring, after-school and summer learning, new textbooks and learning materials, and mental and physical health supports.
Another 23% is going to keep schools operating safely, including providing PPE and updating school facilities. This includes investments in lead abatement and nearly $10 billion for HVAC.
This has led to:
Going from 46% of schools that had safely opened to full-time in-person teaching to 100%: In January 2021, CDC data showed that just 46% of schools were open full-time in-person. Today, all schools are open.
A major increase in staffing and investments to address student mental health: Schools now employ 36% more school social workers, 11% more school counselors, and 28% more school nurses than pre-pandemic.
Major Investment in Workforce Training and Connecting Americans to Good Jobs:
Over $40 billion from the American Rescue Plan has gone to workforce training efforts, including over $10 billion from ARP’s State and Local Fund invested in over 3,000 workforce projects across the country, including pre-apprenticeships and other programs to prepare for new infrastructure, health care and care jobs.
$500 million Competitive Good Jobs Challenge Awards for 32 Workforce Training Partnerships across the country
$1 billion Competitive Build Back Better Regional Challenge – 21 Winners won between $25 million and $65 million to execute transformational projects and revitalize local industries. Projects include developing workforce training programs and connecting workers to jobs – and other transformational investments.
Historic Investment in Expanding and Supporting our Health Care Workforce, including:
$1.1 Billion investment in the Community Health Workforce, including increasing the mental health workforce
Well over $10 Billion of American Rescue Plan Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) funds being used for workforce efforts.
Rapid deployment of over 14,000 community outreach workers (through over 150 national and local organizations).
Establishment of the first-of-its-kind Public Health AmeriCorps to build and train the next generation of public health leaders, already serving 82 organizations across the country and supporting more than 3,000 AmeriCorps members.
Supporting the largest field strength in history (over 22,700 providers) for the National Health Service Corps, Nurse Corps, and Substance Use Disorder Treatment and Recovery programs, treating more than 23.6 million patients in underserved communities
Eighteen Million College Students Have Received Direct Financial Assistance from the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fundthat was expanded by ARP:
Colleges have reached an estimated 18 million students with direct financial aid from Higher Education Emergency Relief (HEERF) since the beginning of 2021 to help them stay in school and help cover basic needs during the pandemic, like food, housing, and child care.
Direct financial assistance for an estimated 6 million community college students.
80% of Pell Grant recipients received direct financial relief in 2021.
An estimated 450,000 students at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) received direct financial aid. Further, in 2021, 77 percent of HBCUs used HEERF funds to discharge unpaid student balances.
Nine in 10 institutions reported that HEERF funds enabled them to keep students enrolled who were at risk of dropping out due to pandemic-related factors.
Historic Investment in the Pension Security for up to 3 million Union workers & retirees: ARP’s Special Financial Assistance is the most significant investment in pension security for union workers and retirees in the past 50 years.
Over 200 multiemployer plans that were on pace to become insolvent in the nearterm will now have solvency ensured until at least 2051 solvent & paying full benefits thanks to ARP.
Preventing a wave of multi-employer insolvencies for 2-3 million workers who would have seen major cuts to their earned retirement benefits.
Pension Cuts Reversed for over 80,000 Workers and Retirees in 18 “MPRA” Multiemployer Plans that had taken cuts to avoid insolvency.
Most significant effort to protect the solvency of the multiemployer pension system in almost 50 years.
First-Ever Summer Nutrition Benefit for Students with Nationwide Reach– Extended Permanently:
ARP created the first-ever summer nutrition benefit with nationwide reach.
30 million young people: Reached the families of 30 million students.
Permanent: Congress extended this innovative program permanently in last year’s Omnibus bill, the first major new permanent food assistance program in nearly five decades.
Since day one in office, President Biden has focused on providing America’s small businesses with the tools and resources they need to reopen, rehire, and build back better. To-date, the Biden-Harris Administration has distributed more than $400 billion in critical relief to more than 6 million small businesses.
President Biden’s efforts have not only helped millions of Main Street businesses keep their lights on and employees on payroll, they have enabled a remarkable rebound in small business activity, with small business demand for labor and inventories near record highs. According to a leading survey of small business owners, the share of small businesses planning to create new jobs in the next three months is higher than it ever was at any point during the previous Administration. Another recent survey of small business owners found that 71 percent are optimistic about their own performance in 2022, up from 63 percent one year ago. The broader economic recovery – one of the fastest on record – has also helped spur a surge in entrepreneurship. Americans are applying to start new businesses at a record rate, up about 30 percent compared to before the pandemic.
The historically high level of new business applications has taken place amidst the Biden-Harris Administration’s historic bottom-up approach to economic recovery. Soon after taking office, the Biden-Harris Administration enacted the American Rescue Plan (ARP), which provided direct relief to families and small businesses and supported the vaccination of more than 200 million Americans. Through the combination of ARP investments and existing emergency relief programs, the Biden-Harris Administration distributed more than $400 billion in critical relief to more than 6 million small businesses. The ARP also provided thousands of entrepreneurs with the personal and financial security to launch their own business. This support included $1,400 per-person Economic Impact Payments, expanded Child Tax Credit payments of up to $300 per child per month, Affordable Care Act credits and COBRA premium support to ensure health care coverage remained available, and an expansion of the Employer Retention Credit, including expanding eligibility to recent startups.
Despite the historic progress made to-date, the Biden-Harris Administration remains committed to helping America’s new small businesses grow, create jobs, and provide the essential goods and services our communities depend on. Specifically, the Biden-Harris Administration is:Expanding access to low cost loans and investments. The Treasury Department is working with all states and territories plus 400 Tribal governments on standing up small business lending and investment programs as part of the $10 billion State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI) established through the ARP. and By this summer, the first wave of programs will launch, unlocking billions of dollars in new lending and investment capital for small businesses in big cities and small towns all across America. Small businesses can also continue to access the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) traditional 7a, 504, and microloan programs, which collectively reached record high loan volume in Fiscal Year 2021 by providing $44.8 billion through more than 61,000 loans.
Increasing access to billions of dollars in federal contracts for small businesses. Last year, the Biden-Harris Administration announced its strategy for increasing the share of federal procurement dollars that go to socially disadvantaged businesses by 50% by 2025. President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law also includes a historic procurement effort designed to support small businesses and tackle long standing inequities in the contracting system. Among other things, the legislation directs DOT to attempt to award more than $37 billion in federal contracts to small disadvantaged business contractors.
Helping small businesses hire new employees and reach new customers by providing universal broadband. Broadband internet is necessary for Americans to do their jobs and increasingly important for small business owners all across America. President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law will invest $65 billion in broadband infrastructure, helping ensure that every American has access to reliable high-speed internet and creating new opportunities for small businesses nationwide.
12 States Set New Records on Low Unemployment as National Rate Fell to 3.9%
Meanwhile, new employment data continues to show that the labor market has improved under President Biden, with 42 states reporting drops in unemployment in December and 12 states reaching record lows. No states experienced a decline in employment. Year-over-year payroll figures have now increased in 48 states and DC.
“Thanks to the President’s economic plan and his success in getting Americans vaccinated, the unemployment rate nationally dropped to 3.9% – four years earlier than expected, wages are up, and 6.4 million jobs have been created – the most in any one year on record. The President’s economic strategy is working: strengthening our economic growth and creating millions of jobs across the country,” the White House stated.
On the occasion of President Joe Biden’s address to the U.S. Conference of Mayors, January 21, the White House issued a fact sheet detailing some of the ways the Biden-Harris Administration is working with Mayors to deliver for communities across the country, and what passing the Build Back Better agenda could mean:
Getting Shots in Arms and Saving Lives Since the start of his Administration, President Biden has prioritized local partnerships and has worked closely with mayors across the country who have been instrumental as trusted sources of information about the COVID-19 pandemic and vaccines.
Working with local governments, the Administration has shipped over 160 million pieces of personal protective equipment – gloves, gowns, masks – to protect frontline health care workers in cities across the United States. Since first launching surge response teams on July 1st, the Administration has deployed over 3,000 personnel to 39 states and 4 U.S. territories. The Administration also recently worked with several mayors and local jurisdictions to surge federal testing support and federal test sites to several cities.
Over 115 mayors across the country joined the White House, HHS, and We Can Do This campaign to launch a Mayors Challenge to Increase COVID-19 Vaccinations. This campaign was instrumental in increasing the adult vaccination rate through mayors sharing best practices and launching innovative efforts to boost vaccinations, including grassroots outreach, mobile and neighborhood vaccine clinics, incentives, prizes, and other efforts.
Richmond, VA Mayor Levar Stoney as co-lead of the Mayors Challenge, launched the #HotVaccinatedSummer campaign with the Richmond Health Department focused on taking the vaccine to residents through mobile vaccination units, pop-up vaccine sites at grocery stores, food pantries, apartment complexes, and churches, and neighborhood block parties.
Baton Rouge Mayor Sharon Weston Broome and New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell, mayors of Louisiana’s two largest cities, launched a month-long, inter-city “New Orleans vs Baton Rouge COVID challenge” to motivate citizens to get vaccinated.
Detroit, MI Mayor Mike Duggan launched an innovative “Good Neighbor Program” where residents received gift cards for driving their neighbors to get vaccinated, as well as a door-to-door vaccination education canvassing effort.
San Antonio, TX Mayor Ron Nirenberg along with making pop-up vaccine clinics accessible, collaborated with local artists to create murals reminding residents of the importance of getting vaccinated.
Getting People Back to Work President Biden has grown the economy faster than any first-year administration ever with 6.4 million jobs added, the most in one year on record. The unemployment rate is 3.9% – four years faster than projected because of the American Rescue Plan. The Biden-Harris agenda has provided substantial resources to state and local governments to expand and improve America’s workforce development system so that workers of all kinds from diverse communities will be prepared and successful in good-paying union jobs.
The American Rescue Plan (ARP) included $350 billion in state and local fiscal recovery funds that governments can use to assist workers who want and are available to work – including job training, public jobs programs, job fairs, childcare, transportation, hiring bonuses, and subsidized employment efforts). The ARP also invested $3 billion in the Commerce Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) to assist communities in their efforts to build back better from the pandemic, including $1 billion for the Build Back Better Regional Challenge and $500 million for a Good Jobs Challenge that will support sector partnerships that bring employers, unions, non-profits, community colleges, training providers, and local governments together to enhance local training and hiring efforts.
Building Bridges to Infrastructure Jobs:
Washington, DC is using ARP resources to expand the city’s Infrastructure Academy to ensure a diverse workforce is ready to fill the infrastructure jobs that will be created by the historic bipartisan infrastructure law.
Milwaukee, WI has dedicated ARP funds to launch a lead abatement workforce development program and an Earn and Learn program which assists young people entering manufacturing and other high-skill jobs.
Phoenix, AZ is using Rescue Plan funds to partner with local community colleges and the private sector on job training programs that not only will re-skill and re-employ individuals for new careers in high demand workforce areas, such as manufacturing, construction, and the region’s emerging semiconductor industry.
Supporting our Essential Education Workers:
Seattle, WA used ARP fiscal recovery funds to provide premium pay for local child care workers, up to $835 per worker who have been there for at least 6 months.
Bolstering our Health Care Workforce:
Chicago, IL is leveraging ARP funds to build a 2,200 public health workforce working as vaccine ambassadors and addressing vaccine resistance.
New York City is dedicating ARP funds to bolster their public health workforce through the New York City Public Health Corps program, which will focus on a range of public health needs – from vaccine access, to primary care, to mental health counseling.
Building a Better America Since President Biden signed the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the Biden-Harris Administration has hit the ground running with a focus on fostering strong partnerships and working with mayors to implement the largest long-term investment in America’s infrastructure and competitiveness in nearly a century. The historic Bipartisan Infrastructure Law will rebuild crumbling road and bridges, replace lead pipes, help provide high-speed internet to every family in America, and produce concrete results that change people’s lives for the better. These results will create good-paying, union jobs, support domestic manufacturing and supply chains, and position the United States to win the 21st century. As the Administration implements the law, it is following through on President Biden’s commitment to ensure investments advance equity and racial justice, reach communities all across the country – including rural communities, communities of color, and disability communities – and strengthen the nation’s resilience to climate change. Since the enactment of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the Biden Administration has it the ground running. Some of the key actions since the law’s passage include:
Understanding the importance of strong partnership with local governments to deliver results on the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the White House appointed Mitch Landrieu, former Mayor of New Orleans and former President of the US Conference of Mayors, as Infrastructure Implementation Coordinator.
The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) and Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) announced $27 billion in funding to replace, repair, and rehabilitate bridges across the country over the next five years, including many locally-owned “off system” bridges.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced that it will invest more than $14 billion of funding for over 500 projects across 52 states and territories. These key projects will strengthen the nation’s supply chain, provide significant new economic opportunities nationwide, and bolster our defenses against climate change.
USDOT awarded $1 billion in Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) grants to invest in 90 major projects across 47 states funding that will be boosted by an additional $7.5 billion in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) at USDOT announced $3 billion for 3,075 airports across the country that can use investments to upgrade critical infrastructure.
The Vice President announced the Administration’s Lead Pipe and Paint Action Plan, which includes action items focused on collaboration with local partners to accelerate the replacement of lead pipes over the next decade. As part of this plan, EPA announced $7.4 billion in funding allocations for states to upgrade America’s aging water infrastructure, sewerage systems, pipes and service lines, and more.
The Federal Communications Commission launched the Affordable Connectivity Program providing broadband subsidies of up to $30/month for low-income households (up to $75/month for households on Tribal Lands) and up to $100 towards the purchase of a desktop, laptop or tablet computer.
EPA announced $1 billion in funding to clean up 49 Superfund sites across 24 states to accelerate cleanup at dozens of other sites across the country, stop toxic waste from harming communities, and create good-paying jobs.
The Department of the Interior released initial guidance for the states interested in applying for funding to cap and plug orphaned oil and gas wells that reduce methane emissions and create jobs, with 26 states expressing interest in a portion of the $4.7 billion in funding for well plugging, remediation and restoration available in infrastructure programs.
The Department of Energy launched a new Building a Better Grid initiative to accelerate the deployment of new transition lines, and it released a notice of intent to inform the design and implementation of this historic investment.
The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law includes billions of dollars in competitive funding available to cities, towns, and municipalities across dozens of new and existing programs. As local governments begin to rebuild and reinvest in their communities, the Biden-Harris Administration stands ready to support local leaders as they combine funding streams, organize around their priorities, and build local support for long overdue infrastructure projects. The White House released a fact sheet highlights 25 already available or soon-to-be-available sources of funding that local governments – particularly cities – can compete or apply for directly. The White House will also be releasing a comprehensive guidebook of all available funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law in the coming weeks.
Addressing Supply Chain Blockages As our economy has turned back on from the unprecedented shutdown resulting from the pandemic, our supply chains have been strained. The Administration is working closely with mayors and local governments across the country to mitigate supply chain blockages and ensure shelves are stocked.
The Administration’s port envoy has held weekly meetings with city-owned ports, including the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, to identify ways to reduce congestion and move toward 24/7 operations, which reduces the emissions and traffic in communities.
The Department of Transportation awarded more than $241 million in discretionary grants to improve ports facilities and address supply chain disruptions in 19 cities, including Houston, TX; Brunswick, GA; Bay St Louis, MS; Tell City, IN; Alpena, MI; Delcambre, LA; Oakland, CA; Portsmouth, VA; Tacoma, WA; and Long Beach, CA.
The Administration is working to help schools experiencing challenges purchasing and reliably obtaining food for their meal plans. USDA has committed $1.5 billion for schools and states to purchase foods including funding to purchase local foods from historically underserved producers and announced an adjustment in school meal reimbursements that put an estimated $750 million more into school meal programs across the nation this year.
Advancing Local Climate Action On Day One, President Biden rejoined the Paris Agreement, reestablished U.S. leadership, and renewed the federal government’s partnership with the states, cities, Tribes, and localities that carried forward America’s progress on climate. Since then, President Biden has deployed clean wind and solar energy across the country, jumpstarted an electric vehicle future that will be built in America, advanced environmental justice in underserved communities, and taken aggressive action to make our country more resilient to climate change and extreme weather.
Today, President Biden will announce how the Biden-Harris Administration is teaming up with states, cities, labor, and industry to launch the Building Performance Standards Coalition, a first-of-its-kind partnership between 33 state and local governments dedicated to delivering cleaner, healthier, and more affordable buildings. States and cities part of the coalition will design and implement building performance standards that create good paying union jobs, lower the cost of energy bills for consumers, keep residents and workers safe from harmful pollution, and cut emissions from the building sector.
The Administration is also empowering local leaders to advance climate solutions across other sectors—for example:
The Department of Energy set a new National Community Solar Partnership target of powering 5 million homes by 2025, with on-demand technical assistance available to local governments, and launched the SolarAPP+ tool to help them speed up permitting of rooftop solar installations.
The Department of Transportation announced $182 million in grants for transit agencies to deploy zero-emission and low-emission transit buses, including awards to the Chicago Transit Authority; Anaheim, CA; Fort Collins, CO; Lawrence, KS; Jackson, MS; Fayetteville, NC; Lincoln, NE; Norman, OK; and more.
The EPA announced $50 million for environmental justice initiatives using ARP funds, including water infrastructure job training in Baltimore, MD; indoor air quality improvements in Fort Collins, CO; and outreach on asthma and environmental hazards in Hartford, CT.
FEMA announced $1 billion for the FY2021 Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities program, available for cities and other levels of government to proactively invest in community resilience to hurricanes, wildfires, and other disasters.
In November 2021, President Biden and 15 bipartisan mayors representing communities across the country participated in COP26, where the President announced bold plans to reduce methane emissions, create clean energy jobs, and build back better with infrastructure initiatives that advance prosperity and combat the climate crisis.
Addressing Gun Violence and Crime During the President’s first year in office, the Biden-Harris Administration has partnered with mayors across the country on actions to reduce gun violence and has provided historic levels of funding for community-oriented policing and expanding community violence interventions (CVI) – neighborhood-based programs proven to combat gun violence. The Administration has made historic levels of funding from the American Rescue Plan – including $350 billion in state and local funding – available to state and local governments for law enforcement purposes to advance community policing strategies and community violence interventions.
Working with 16-jurisdictions, the White House launched the Community Violence Intervention Collaborative, a cohort of mayors, law enforcement, CVI experts and philanthropic organizations committed to using ARP funding to increase investment in their community violence intervention infrastructure and share best practices.
Cities including Milwaukee, WI; Albuquerque, NM; Syracuse, NY; and Mobile, AL responded to the President’s call by committing and deploying ARP funds for advancing community-oriented policing.
Mayors from cities across the country including Seattle, WA; Buffalo, NY; and Atlanta, GA have committed to deploy ARP fund for community violence interventions following a memo from Senior White House advisors on how state and local officials can implement ARP funding into CVI work.
Cities across the country including St. Louis, MO and Tucson, AZ committed to investing ARP funding in public safety strategies such as summer jobs for young adults and substance abuse and mental health services.
Prevent Housing Instability and Homelessness During the President’s first year in office, the Biden-Harris Administration partnered with mayors across the country to keep Americans housed. The American Rescue Plan (ARP) included over $21 billion for the Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) program. These funds, together with $25 billion signed into law under the previous Administration but implemented under this Administration, enabled households to catch up on rent and avoid evictions. State and local grantees obligated over $25 billion in ERA in 2021, and these funds contributed to a historically low eviction filing rate. Also included within ARP were $5 billion in supplemental funding for HOME, which enables state and local governments to create and preserve affordable housing, and $5 billion in emergency housing vouchers to help people experiencing and at risk of homelessness secure housing.
In June, 46 cities joined the White House to create eviction prevention action plans as part of a first-of-its-kind summit. More than 100 eviction diversion programs were created or expanded as part of this partnership with the White House and local leaders.
Mayors from Louisville, Milwaukee, San Antonio, and Boston shared best practices in subsequent White House events including strategies to prevent evictions and distribute rental assistance to renters and landlords in need.
Dozens of mayors have signed onto House America, a federal initiative aimed at maximizing the ARP resources to address homelessness. The goal of this initiative is to cumulatively re-house 100,000 households experiencing homelessness and add 20,000 new units of affordable housing into the development pipeline by the end of 2022.
Building an Orderly, Fair, and Humane Immigration System The Biden-Harris Administration is working to build a humane, orderly, and fair 21st century immigration system at the border and beyond. One that invests in smart technology and infrastructure at the border, that prioritizes our resources and values immigrants living in our country and contributing to our communities for generations, and that once again welcomes refugees and is a beacon of light for those seeking safe haven.
Since day one, the Biden-Harris Administration took steps to undo the wrongdoings of the previous Administration, including getting rid of the Muslim ban, taking steps to protect DACA recipients, and restoring our asylum system. On day one, President Biden also sent his immigration bill to Congress – The U.S. Citizenship Act – which laid out the components needed to build an updated immigration system that reflects our values and responds to our hemisphere’s current needs.
Working with the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of State and non-profit organizations in Mexico and the United States, the Administration assisted 13,000 people in the wind down of the Migrant Protection Protocol to fight their cases in the United States. The Administration also designated Temporary Protected Status (TPS) to Haiti, Venezuela, Yemen, Syria, Somalia, and Burma, and expanded to El Salvador and Honduras.
The President tasked Vice President Harris with leading efforts to address the root causes of migration from Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras. The Vice President announced $310 million in urgent humanitarian relief in April 2021, in addition to the President’s FY22 budget request for $861 million for Central America. The Vice President also secured $1.2 billion from the private sector to create job programs and invest in the economic stability and prosperity for our partner countries. In addition to the work the Vice President is leading, the Administration is working with countries in South America and leaders in the hemisphere to address migration as a regional issue that necessitates regional leadership and a regional response.
The Administration remains committed to immigration reform, to restoring asylum, and to working with partners to ensure the safety, security, and dignity of immigrants in the region:
Engaged mayors and cities to amplify the broad sweeping impact President Biden’s U.S. Citizenship Act would have on all 11 million undocumented immigrants, including farm workers and individuals with Temporary Protected Status.
Partnered with cities including San Diego, Long Beach, Pomona, Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio to stand up Emergency Influx Sites to provide temporary shelter and care for thousands of unaccompanied children.
Awarded $110 million in supplemental humanitarian funding to the National Board for Emergency Food and Shelter Program eligible to cities and services providers providing humanitarian assistance to migrants at the southern border.
Regularly engaged bipartisan border mayors to discuss and coordinate rebuilding America’s border management and asylum systems that were previously gutted by the prior administration. Additionally, engaged local elected leaders in the Rio Grande Valley, San Diego, and El Centro border sectors to protect border communities from the physical dangers resulting from the previous administration’s approach to border wall construction.
Welcoming Refugees and Resettlement Efforts The Biden-Harris Administration has taken a whole-of-America approach to safely, securely, and effectively welcome more than 76,000 Afghan allies to the United States through the Operation Allies Welcome.
In close coordination with Departments and Agencies across the Federal government, the Administration has worked with state and local officials; refugee resettlement organizations; veterans; faith, private sector, and non-profit leaders to ensure Afghans are set up for success in their new communities. The White House Operation Allies Welcome team provided briefings to USCM and visited resettlement sites in six states to engage with local officials and stakeholders on the frontlines of welcoming our Afghan allies. In his capacity as OAW Coordinator, Jack Markell attended the 2021 USCM Summer Meeting in Dayton, Ohio to brief mayors on their important role in the resettlement effort.
USCM Past President Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley and Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin led the effort for USCM’s resolution in support of Afghan resettlement and welcomed briefings from senior Administration officials to keep mayors updated on resettlement efforts
Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner worked with local resettlement agencies to raise more than $8.5 million dollars for the Houston Afghan Resettlement Fund (HARF) to help the local resettlement agencies provide additional services for Afghan evacuees
Oklahoma City Mayor David Holt collaborated with the local resettlement agency to identify additional funding stream to for affordable housing for Afghan evacuees
Lansing Mayor Andy Schor worked with the local school district to ensure a warm welcome to arriving Afghans students and families.
Sacramento Mayor Darryl Steinberg coordinated with state, county, and local leaders to create a new coalition called the American Network of Services for Afghanistan Refugees (ANSAR) to assist in meeting the needs of Afghan families.
In addition to President Biden, ten members of the President’s Cabinet spoke at the USCM Winter Meeting, including Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen, Secretary of Health and Human Services Xavier Becerra, Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas, Secretary of Labor Marty Walsh, Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona, Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg, Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Marcia Fudge, Attorney General Merrick Garland, and EPA Administrator Regan. Senior Administration officials including ARP Coordinator Gene Sperling, Infrastructure Implementation Coordinator Mitch Landrieu, and Director of Intergovernmental Affairs Julie Rodriguez will also speak at the event.
Intel Announces $20 Billion Ohio Facility; Latest Company to Invest in U.S., Strengthen Domestic Supply Chains
The White House released this fact sheet about how the Biden Administration is bringing semiconductor manufacturing back to the United States:
Semiconductors are an essential building block in the goods and products that Americans use every day. These computer chips are critical to a range of sectors and products from cars to smartphones to medical equipment and even vacuum cleaners. They help power our infrastructure from our grid to our broadband. The United States used to lead the world in global semiconductor manufacturing. But in recent decades, the U.S. lost its edge—our share of global semiconductor production has fallen from 37 percent to just 12 percent over the last 30 years.
The COVID-19 pandemic shined a spotlight on the fragility in the global semiconductor supply chain. Experts estimate that the global chip shortage knocked off a full percentage point from U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) last year. U.S. autoworkers faced furloughs and production shut downs due to pandemic-driven disruptions in Asian semiconductor factories, contributing to large increases in the price of cars for U.S. consumers. One-third of the annual price increases in core consumer price index (CPI) last year was due to high car prices alone.
The Biden-Harris Administration has been working around the clock with Congress, our international allies and partners, and the private sector to expand U.S. chip manufacturing capacity, bring back critical American manufacturing jobs, address the chip shortage, and ensure we are not exposed to these disruptions again. Today, Intel will announce a new $20 billion factory outside Columbus, Ohio.
Today’s announcement is the latest marker of progress in the Biden-Harris Administration’s efforts to ramp up domestic manufacturing for critical goods like semiconductors, tackle near-term supply chain bottlenecks, revitalize our manufacturing base, and create good jobs here at home. This investment will create 7,000 construction jobs and another 3,000 permanent jobs, another sign of the strength of the American economy.
To accelerate this progress, the President is urging Congress to pass legislation to strengthen U.S. research and development and manufacturing for critical supply chains, including semiconductors. The Senate passed the U.S. Innovation and Competition Act (USICA) in June and the Administration is working with the House and Senate to finalize this legislation. It includes full funding for the CHIPS for America Act, which will provide $52 billion to catalyze more private-sector investments and continued American technological leadership.
Since the beginning of 2021, the semiconductor industry has announced nearly $80 billion in new investments in the United States through 2025, according to the Semiconductor Industry Association. These investments will create tens of thousands of good-paying U.S. jobs, support U.S. technological leadership, and promote security and resilience in global semiconductor supply chains. In addition to Intel’s announcement today, investments include:
A $17 billion Samsung factory in Texas – the result of sustained work by the Administration, including the President’s meeting with President Moon of the Republic of Korea in May.
Texas Instruments investing up to $30 billion in Texas;
A new Global Foundries factory in New York state;
Cree’s intention to spend $1 billion to expand a current plant in North Carolina;
SK Group investments in a new U.S. R&D center; and
Micron to expanding U.S. production.
The Biden-Harris Administration has led a whole of government effort to secure these critical investments.
President Biden prioritized domestic semiconductor manufacturing and research and development (R&D) shortly after taking office, designating semiconductor supply chains as a centerpiece of his national supply chain initiative launched in February 2021.
In June, the Commerce Department issued a set of recommendations on how to secure the U.S. semiconductor supply chain. Since that time, Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo, National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan, and National Economic Council Director Brian Deese have held regular follow-up engagements with industry leaders and diplomatic partners and allies to advance practical solutions to strengthen the global semiconductor supply chain. This includes White House has met with the CEOs of multiple semiconductor companies in this effort.
In October, President Biden hosted a global summit on supply chains with the heads of state from 14 countries and the European Union on the margins of the G20 in Italy to discuss supply chain disruptions, with a focus on semiconductors. The President also focused on semiconductor supply chain resilience in his bilateral meetings with foreign leaders and directed the Administration to cooperate with Europe on strengthening global supply chains through the U.S.-E.U. Trade and Technology Council (TTC) and through the Quad’s focus on critical technologies.
Investments in new foundries are critical to the long-term resilience of our semiconductor supply chains. At the same time, the Administration is working to address the near-term disruptions in semiconductor supply chains that have contributed to challenges in a number of manufacturing sectors and to price increases for U.S. consumers.
In April 2021, the President hosted a virtual summit with leading firms that produce chips and those that use chips to identify practical ways to discuss actions they could to address the disruptions resulting from the global chip shortage. By the end of the year, the participants had announced new partnerships between semiconductor companies and U.S. automakers to strengthen the resiliency of the automotive chip supply chain.
In the summer, the Administration worked with governments and companies around the world to mitigate COVID-related disruptions to semiconductor manufacturing and in September 2021 established a global early alert system to identify and address pandemic-related disruptions.
The Commerce Department promoted transparency in semiconductor supply chains, including through a Fall 2021 survey on the chips shortage to identify the key chokepoints in the semiconductor supply chains. Over 150 responses were received from all parts of the supply chain – producers, consumers, and intermediaries – include responses from nearly all the major semiconductor producers and the major automakers. The results of the survey will be released publicly by the end of January 2021.
The U.S. Department of Defense has used Defense Production Act authorities to strengthen supply chains for key defense-related semiconductors.
Upon the House passing the historic, $1.2 trillion bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, President Joe Biden issued this statement:
Tonight, we took a monumental step forward as a nation.
The United States House of Representatives passed the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, a once-in-generation bipartisan infrastructure bill that will create millions of jobs, turn the climate crisis into an opportunity, and put us on a path to win the economic competition for the 21st Century.
It will create good-paying jobs that can’t be outsourced. Jobs that will transform our transportation system with the most significant investments in passenger and freight rail, roads, bridges, ports, airports, and public transit in generations.
This will make it easier for companies to get goods to market more quickly and reduce supply chain bottlenecks now and for decades to come. This will ease inflationary pressures and lower costs for working families.
The bill will create jobs replacing lead water pipes so every family can drink clean water.
It will make high-speed internet affordable and available everywhere in America.
This bill will make historic and significant strides that take on the climate crisis. It will build out the first-ever national network of electric vehicle charging stations across the country. We will get America off the sidelines on manufacturing solar panels, wind farms, batteries, and electric vehicles to grow these supply chains, reward companies for paying good wages and for sourcing their materials from here in the United States, and allow us to export these products and technologies to the world.
It will also make historic investments in environmental clean-up and remediation, and build up our resilience for the next superstorms, droughts, wildfires, and hurricanes that cost us billions of dollars in damage each year.
I’m also proud that a rule was voted on that will allow for passage of my Build Back Better Act in the House of Representatives the week of November 15th.
The Build Back Better Act will be a once-in-a-generation investment in our people.
It will lower bills for healthcare, child care, elder care, prescription drugs, and preschool. And middle-class families get a tax cut.
This bill is also fiscally responsible, fully paid for, and doesn’t raise the deficit. It does so by making sure the wealthiest Americans and biggest corporations begin to pay their fair share and doesn’t raise taxes a single cent on anyone making less than $400,000 per year.
I look forward to signing both of these bills into law.
Generations from now, people will look back and know this is when America won the economic competition for the 21st Century.
FACT SHEET: The Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal
Today, Congress passed the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal (Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act), a once-in-a-generation investment in our nation’s infrastructure and competitiveness. For far too long, Washington policymakers have celebrated “infrastructure week” without ever agreeing to build infrastructure. The President promised to work across the aisle to deliver results and rebuild our crumbling infrastructure. After the President put forward his plan to do exactly that and then negotiated a deal with Members of Congress from both parties, this historic legislation is moving to his desk for signature.
This Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal will rebuild America’s roads, bridges and rails, expand access to clean drinking water, ensure every American has access to high-speed internet, tackle the climate crisis, advance environmental justice, and invest in communities that have too often been left behind. The legislation will help ease inflationary pressures and strengthen supply chains by making long overdue improvements for our nation’s ports, airports, rail, and roads. It will drive the creation of good-paying union jobs and grow the economy sustainably and equitably so that everyone gets ahead for decades to come. Combined with the President’s Build Back Framework, it will add on average 1.5 million jobs per year for the next 10 years.
This historic legislation will:
Deliver clean water to all American families and eliminate the nation’s lead service lines. Currently, up to 10 million American households and 400,000 schools and child care centers lack safe drinking water. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal will invest $55 billion to expand access to clean drinking water for households, businesses, schools, and child care centers all across the country. From rural towns to struggling cities, the legislation will invest in water infrastructure and eliminate lead service pipes, including in Tribal Nations and disadvantaged communities that need it most.
Ensure every American has access to reliable high-speed internet. Broadband internet is necessary for Americans to do their jobs, to participate equally in school learning, health care, and to stay connected. Yet, by one definition, more than 30 million Americans live in areas where there is no broadband infrastructure that provides minimally acceptable speeds – a particular problem in rural communities throughout the country. And, according to the latest OECD data, among 35 countries studied, the United States has the second highest broadband costs. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal will deliver $65 billion to help ensure that every American has access to reliable high-speed internet through a historic investment in broadband infrastructure deployment. The legislation will also help lower prices for internet service and help close the digital divide, so that more Americans can afford internet access.
Repair and rebuild our roads and bridges with a focus on climate change mitigation, resilience, equity, and safety for all users. In the United States, 1 in 5 miles of highways and major roads, and 45,000 bridges, are in poor condition. The legislation will reauthorize surface transportation programs for five years and invest $110 billion in additional funding to repair our roads and bridges and support major, transformational projects. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal makes the single largest investment in repairing and reconstructing our nation’s bridges since the construction of the interstate highway system. It will rebuild the most economically significant bridges in the country as well as thousands of smaller bridges. The legislation also includes the first ever Safe Streets and Roads for All program to support projects to reduce traffic fatalities, which claimed more than 20,000 lives in the first half of 2021.
Improve transportation options for millions of Americans and reduce greenhouse emissions through the largest investment in public transit in U.S. history. America’s public transit infrastructure is inadequate – with a multibillion-dollar repair backlog, representing more than 24,000 buses, 5,000 rail cars, 200 stations, and thousands of miles of track, signals, and power systems in need of replacement. Communities of color are twice as likely to take public transportation and many of these communities lack sufficient public transit options. The transportation sector in the United States is now the largest single source of greenhouse gas emissions. The legislation includes $39 billion of new investment to modernize transit, in addition to continuing the existing transit programs for five years as part of surface transportation reauthorization. In total, the new investments and reauthorization in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal provide $89.9 billion in guaranteed funding for public transit over the next five years — the largest Federal investment in public transit in history. The legislation will expand public transit options across every state in the country, replace thousands of deficient transit vehicles, including buses, with clean, zero emission vehicles, and improve accessibility for the elderly and people with disabilities.
Upgrade our nation’s airports and ports to strengthen our supply chains and prevent disruptions that have caused inflation. This will improve U.S. competitiveness, create more and better jobs at these hubs, and reduce emissions. Decades of neglect and underinvestment in our infrastructure have left the links in our goods movement supply chains struggling to keep up with our strong economic recovery from the pandemic. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal will make the fundamental changes that are long overdue for our nation’s ports and airports so this will not happen again. The United States built modern aviation, but our airports lag far behind our competitors. According to some rankings, no U.S. airports rank in the top 25 of airports worldwide. Our ports and waterways need repair and reimagination too. The legislation invests $17 billion in port infrastructure and waterways and $25 billion in airports to address repair and maintenance backlogs, reduce congestion and emissions near ports and airports, and drive electrification and other low-carbon technologies. Modern, resilient, and sustainable port, airport, and freight infrastructure will strengthen our supply chains and support U.S. competitiveness by removing bottlenecks and expediting commerce and reduce the environmental impact on neighboring communities.
Make the largest investment in passenger rail since the creation of Amtrak. U.S. passenger rail lags behind the rest of the world in reliability, speed, and coverage. China already has 22,000 miles of high-speed rail, and is planning to double that by 2035. The legislation positions rail to play a central role in our transportation and economic future, investing $66 billion in additional rail funding to eliminate the Amtrak maintenance backlog, modernize the Northeast Corridor, and bring world-class rail service to areas outside the northeast and mid-Atlantic. This is the largest investment in passenger rail since Amtrak’s creation, 50 years ago and will create safe, efficient, and climate-friendly alternatives for moving people and freight.
Build a national network of electric vehicle (EV) chargers. U.S. market share of plug-in EV sales is only one-third the size of the Chinese EV market. That needs to change. The legislation will invest $7.5 billion to build out a national network of EV chargers in the United States. This is a critical step in the President’s strategy to fight the climate crisis and it will create good U.S. manufacturing jobs. The legislation will provide funding for deployment of EV chargers along highway corridors to facilitate long-distance travel and within communities to provide convenient charging where people live, work, and shop. This investment will support the President’s goal of building a nationwide network of 500,000 EV chargers to accelerate the adoption of EVs, reduce emissions, improve air quality, and create good-paying jobs across the country.
Upgrade our power infrastructure to deliver clean, reliable energy across the country and deploy cutting-edge energy technology to achieve a zero-emissions future. According to the Department of Energy, power outages cost the U.S. economy up to $70 billion annually. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal’s more than $65 billion investment includes the largest investment in clean energy transmission and grid in American history. It will upgrade our power infrastructure, by building thousands of miles of new, resilient transmission lines to facilitate the expansion of renewables and clean energy, while lowering costs. And it will fund new programs to support the development, demonstration, and deployment of cutting-edge clean energy technologies to accelerate our transition to a zero-emission economy.
Make our infrastructure resilient against the impacts of climate change, cyber-attacks, and extreme weather events. Millions of Americans feel the effects of climate change each year when their roads wash out, power goes down, or schools get flooded. Last year alone, the United States faced 22 extreme weather and climate-related disaster events with losses exceeding $1 billion each – a cumulative price tag of nearly $100 billion. People of color are more likely to live in areas most vulnerable to flooding and other climate change-related weather events. The legislation makes our communities safer and our infrastructure more resilient to the impacts of climate change and cyber-attacks, with an investment of over $50 billion to protect against droughts, heat, floods and wildfires, in addition to a major investment in weatherization. The legislation is the largest investment in the resilience of physical and natural systems in American history.
Deliver the largest investment in tackling legacy pollution in American history by cleaning up Superfund and brownfield sites, reclaiming abandoned mines, and capping orphaned oil and gas wells. In thousands of rural and urban communities around the country, hundreds of thousands of former industrial and energy sites are now idle – sources of blight and pollution. Proximity to a Superfund site can lead to elevated levels of lead in children’s blood. The bill will invest $21 billion clean up Superfund and brownfield sites, reclaim abandoned mine land and cap orphaned oil and gas wells. These projects will remediate environmental harms, address the legacy pollution that harms the public health of communities, create good-paying union jobs, and advance long overdue environmental justice This investment will benefit communities of color as, it has been found that 26% of Black Americans and 29% of Hispanic Americans live within 3 miles of a Superfund site, a higher percentage than for Americans overall.
According to a new report from Moody’s this morning, President Biden’s bipartisan infrastructure deal and Build Back Better Framework will add 1.5 million jobs per year on average across the whole decade, while accelerating America’s path to full employment and increasing labor force participation.
Moody’s also projects that total GDP will increase by nearly $3 trillion relative to the baseline over the next decade.
And, the Moody’s report confirms what the President has said for weeks: that these sorts of investments in making our economy more productive will keep prices stable and decrease inflationary pressure.
Moody’s notes that, “the legislation is also designed to ease the financial burden of inflation for lower- and middle-income Americans by helping with the cost of childcare, eldercare, education, healthcare and housing for these income groups.” The Moody’s report concludes that, “failing to pass legislation would diminish the economy’s prospects.”
Since President Biden took office, there has been historic job growth – nearly 5 million new jobs, the most in any President’s first eight months on record. The average number of new unemployment insurance claims has been cut by more than 60 percent and small business optimism has returned to its pre-pandemic levels. Independent projections from the CBO, the IMF, the Federal Reserve, the World Bank, the OECD, and many others all forecast America this year reaching the highest levels of growth in decades thanks to the President’s success in getting economic relief to the middle-class and curbing the pandemic. While the American Rescue Plan is changing the course of the pandemic and delivering relief for working families, this is no time to build back to the way things were.
This is the moment to reimagine and rebuild a new economy by making transformational investments in our middle-class and economic competitiveness. The President’s bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and Build Back Better Framework will rebuild the economy from the bottom up and the middle out, ease the burden of high costs on working families, and deliver one of the biggest middle class tax cuts ever.
The White House released updated state fact sheets that highlight the nationwide impact of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, the largest long-term investment in our infrastructure and competitiveness in nearly a century.
The fact sheets highlight how the historic legislation will deliver for states and territories across the country to repair roads and bridges, improve transportation options, build a network of EV chargers to accelerate the adoption of EVs, help connect every American to reliable high-speed internet, eliminate the nation’s lead service lines and pipes for clean drinking water, protect against extreme weather events and cyberattacks and improve our nation’s airports.
In the coming days and weeks, we expect to receive additional data on the impact of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act state by state.
Individual fact sheets for each of the 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico are linked below.
Over the first three full months of the Biden-Harris Administration, the economy added more than 1.5 million jobs, or more than 500,000 jobs per month on average. That compares to an average of 60,000 jobs per month in the three previous months. These three months have seen the strongest first three months of job growth of any administration.
Despite this progress, there’s more work to do to climb out of the economic crisis brought on by the pandemic. The Biden-Harris Administration is acting aggressively to ensure that the millions of Americans who remain unemployed, through no fault of their own, can find safe, good-paying work as quickly as possible. That’s why the President is announcing today that the Administration will take steps to remove barriers that are preventing Americans from returning safely to good-paying work and take steps to make it easier for employers to hire new workers.
And, the President and the Administration will reaffirm the basic rules of the unemployment insurance (UI) program. Anyone receiving UI who is offered a suitable job must take it or lose their UI benefits. A core purpose of the UI program is helping workers get back to work, and UI provides laid-off workers with temporary assistance to help pay bills and relieve hardship. By reaffirming these rules and purposes, the Administration will ensure that the UI program continues to support workers and facilitate hiring.
“Let’s be clear,” President Joe Biden stated, “our economic plan is working. I never said — and no serious analyst ever suggested — that climbing out of the deep, deep hole our economy was in would be simple, easy, immediate, or perfectly steady. Remember, 22 million Americans lost their jobs in this pandemic.
“So, some months will exceed expectations; others will fall short. The question is, ‘What is the trendline? Are we headed in the right direction? Are we taking the right steps to keep it going?’ And the answer, clearly, is yes…
“Twenty-two million people lost their jobs in this pandemic through no fault of their own. They lost their jobs to a virus, and to a government that bungled its response to the crisis and failed to protect them.
“We still have 8 million fewer jobs than we did when the pandemic started. And for many of those folks, unemployment benefits are a lifeline. No one should be allowed to game the system and we’ll insist the law is followed, but let’s not take our eye off the ball…
“So we need to stay focused on creating jobs and beating this pandemic today, and building back better for tomorrow. The American Rescue Plan is just that: a rescue plan. It’s to get us out of the crisis and back on the track, but it’s not nearly enough.
“That’s why we need the American Jobs Plan, which is an eight-year investment — an eight-year investment strategy to make sure working people of this country get to share in the benefits of a rising economy, and to put us in a position to win the competition with China and the rest of the world for the 21st century.”
Specifically, today the President is:
REMOVING BARRIERS THAT ARE KEEPING AMERICANS FROM RETURNING SAFELY TO GOOD-PAYING WORK
Accelerating the Provision of Assistance to Hard-Hit Child Care Providers to Get More Parents Back to Work
Between February 2020 and March 2021, 520,000 mothers and 170,000 fathers between ages 20 and 54 left the labor force and have not returned. Many need or want to work but cannot because of child care disruptions. At the same time, early childhood and child care providers – nearly all small businesses, overwhelmingly owned by women and disproportionately owned by people of color – have been hit hard by the pandemic. According to one survey, as of December, about one in four child care providers open at the start of the pandemic were closed, hindering access to care, especially for families of color. Child care providers that have stayed open have gone to enormous lengths to do so and are struggling to stay open: two in five providers report taking on debt for their programs using personal credit cards to pay for increased costs and three in five work in programs that have reduced expenses through layoffs, furloughs, or pay cuts. And, there are 150,000 fewer child care jobs today than there were at the beginning of the pandemic.
The American Rescue Plan provides funding to address the child care crisis caused by COVID-19 to help parents who need or want to work to return to their jobs. This includes funding to stabilize the child care industry so that parents can send their children to safe, healthy, stable child care environments and additional funding to help families access affordable, high-quality care, including by providing subsidized care to more than 800,000 families with the greatest need and by providing resources for hard-hit child care providers.
Today, the Department of Health and Human Services is releasing guidance to states, tribes, and territories so that states can start getting the child care stabilization funding to providers immediately. The guidance will encourage states to get funding out quickly and to make it as easy as possible for hundreds of thousands of child care providers, including centers and family-based providers, to receive the funding. It will also encourage states to allow the funds to be used broadly to meet the unique needs of providers so they can reopen or maintain essential services. It will explain, for example, how they can use the funds to bolster their workforce, cover expenses like rent and utilities, and pay for goods and services needed to stay open or reopen. And, it will provide guidance on ways providers can use funds to help them operate according to CDC guidelines, so that as parents return to work, they can have peace of mind their children are in a safe and healthy learning environment. In all, these funds will support child care providers in keeping their doors open, benefiting the parents of more than 5 million children who rely on them to stay in or return to the labor force.
And, thanks to the historic expansion of the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit (CDCTC) in the American Rescue Plan, families can rest assured that they can receive up to half of their child care expenses this year when they file taxes for 2021. A median income family with two kids under age 13 will receive a tax credit of up to $8,000 towards this year’s expenses, compared with a maximum of $1,200 previously.
Directing the Secretary of Labor to Safely Expand States’ Reemployment Services and Workforce Development Boards’ Jobs Counseling for Unemployment Beneficiaries.
States receive federal funding for Reemployment Services and Eligibility Assessments (RESEA) of UI beneficiaries to help them find employment while ensuring they remain eligible for benefits. These services shorten workers’ time on unemployment benefits by helping them match with good jobs and confirm their eligibility for benefits. States significantly and appropriately slowed in-person RESEA meetings in the midst of historic unemployment and the COVID-19 pandemic. With the economy and jobs growing again, the President will direct the Secretary of Labor to issue guidance to states to quickly and safely – consistent with CDC and OSHA guidance – expand their RESEA programs so that more UI beneficiaries can return to work.
Similarly, the public workforce system’s Workforce Development Boards (WDB) collectively receive hundreds of millions of dollars they can use to provide individualized career counseling, called “individual career services,” to job seekers. However, because of the pandemic’s risks, many WDBs stopped providing in-person services and had to quickly transition to remote services. Now that tens of millions of Americans have been vaccinated, and we know how to operate physical locations safely, the President will direct the Secretary of Labor to work with the public workforce system to provide the maximum level possible of individual career services to UI beneficiaries and other unemployed workers using existing resources, and in a manner consistent with CDC and OSHA guidance.
MAKING IT EASIER FOR EMPLOYERS TO HIRE NEW WORKERS
Supporting Hard-Hit Restaurants and Bars
Restaurants, bars, and other small businesses offering on-site food and beverages are vital to our communities and economy. From big cities to small towns, these restaurants and bars offer communities a place to gather, celebrate, and share ideas. They also employed nearly 12 percent of all workers prior to the pandemic. Despite their importance, restaurants and bars have suffered severely during the pandemic. The leisure and hospitality sector, which includes restaurants and bars, had 17 percent fewer jobs this April than in February 2020.
Though we have seen significant progress under the Biden-Harris Administration – leisure and hospitality added 331,000 jobs in April, by far the most of any industry and more than it added in March – there is still more work to do to help this critical sector recover. Established through the American Rescue Plan, the Biden-Harris Administration recently launched the Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF) – a program to aid restaurants, bars, food trucks, and other food and drink establishments. These grants will give restaurants and bars the flexibility to hire back workers at good wages. In the first two days of the program, 186,200 restaurants, bars, and other eligible businesses in all 50 states, Washington, D.C., and five U.S. Territories applied for relief.
Today, the Administration is sending the first grants under the program to 16,000 hard-hit restaurants. These include restaurants in states and territories throughout the country, and restaurants owned and controlled by women, veterans, and socially and economically disadvantaged individuals.
Providing States and Localities with the Resources They Need to Help Return Americans to Work
The American Rescue Plan delivered flexible Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds that will help state and local governments hire back public sector workers; ramp up the effectiveness of their COVID response and vaccination programs to make return to work, school, and care safer; and bolster efforts to help workers negatively affected by the pandemic to train for and secure good-paying jobs. With today’s announcement, the U.S. Department of Treasury is making the first segment of these funds available to states and localities and laying out how these funds can be used to address pandemic-response needs and support the communities and populations hardest-hit by the COVID-19 crisis.
State and local employment remains 1.3 million jobs down since before the pandemic. Learning from the mistakes of the Great Recession, when state and local government budget cuts were a drag on GDP growth for 23 of the 26 quarters following the crisis, the funds will provide these governments with the resources needed to help address challenges in returning Americans to work. This includes in the public sector, where state and local employment remains down over one million jobs since the start of the pandemic. Fiscal Recovery Funds will help bring firefighters, teachers, school staff, cops, and other public servants back to work.
Helping Employers – Especially Small Businesses – Rehire and Retain Workers Through the Extended and Expanded Employee Retention Credit
To help hard-hit employers rehire and retain workers, President Biden extended and expanded the Employee Retention Credit (ERC) in the American Rescue Plan. This year, the ERC offers eligible employers with 500 or fewer employees a tax credit of 70 percent of the first $10,000 in wages per employee per quarter. In other words, this refundable, advanceable credit will cover up to $7,000 in wages per quarter or $28,000 per year for each employee. For example:
A small independent retailer in Milwaukee, Wisconsin with 25 employees has $130,000 in payroll expenses per quarter (all for employees earning less than $10,000 in the quarter), and experiences a 25 percent decline in gross receipts in the first quarter of 2021 compared to the first quarter of 2019. The retailer is eligible for the Employee Retention Credit in the first quarter since it experienced a greater than 20 percent decline in gross receipts. The retailer is also eligible for the ERC in the second quarter because of the decline as compared to 2019 in the immediately preceding first quarter. The retailer can claim a tax credit of $91,000 in both the first and second quarters (for a total of $182,000). The amount of the tax credit would be applied against the retailer’s quarterly federal payroll tax amount, and then, assuming that the $91,000 was in excess of the total liability for the quarter, the excess would be advanced (or paid by the government directly to the retailer). If the retailer experienced declines in gross receipts in the third quarter as compared to 2019, it could claim an additional tax credit (in a similar amount) for the third quarter and the fourth quarter. The small retail business could use this advance – which could amount to tens of thousands of dollars – to rehire workers, raise wages, improve facilities, and purchase new inventory.
While more than 30,000 small businesses have already claimed more than $1 billion in ERCs this year, the Biden-Harris Administration is working to increase awareness of and participation in this beneficial program. Specifically, this week, the Treasury Department will disseminate clear and concise steps on how businesses can determine their eligibility and claim the ERC. These and other efforts will help businesses bring employees back sooner and keep them on the job as the economy recovers.
Helping Employers Ramp Back Up
As businesses ramp back up without knowing how many workers they will need to operate as the economy recovers, some will look to bring workers on part-time. The UI system offers options for these employers and their returning workers. Workers shouldn’t have to choose between losing their full UI benefits to take part-time work that represents only a portion of their original salary. The Department of Labor will announce this week how unemployed workers who are rehired part-time don’t have to face that choice. They can work part-time while still receiving part of their UI benefits so they can work and still make ends meet.
There are two programs that can help and the Department of Labor this week will help highlight them:
Short-Time Compensation: Short-time compensation was designed to help prevent layoffs by allowing workers to remain employed at reduced hours and still collect a portion of their UI benefits. But it can also be used to help employers rehire their already laid off workers. If an employer brings a laid-off employee back part-time and participates in the short-time compensation program, that worker will receive pro-rated UI benefits to help cover reduced compensation for not working full time, as well as the $300 weekly supplement until that supplement expires September 6th.
The Biden-Harris Administration will highlight this program to help employers rehire their laid-off employees in the coming weeks and work to make it as easy as possible for employers and workers to participate. Short-time compensation programs are currently available in . These benefits are fully federally funded through September 6 for those states.
Partial UI: Another overlooked option for helping employers ramp up is the partial UI program, which allows workers to return to work at a new employer at reduced hours while still receiving some unemployment benefits. This is a good option for workers who may not qualify for short-time compensation because they are not returning to their previous employer. States can enhance the capacity of partial UI by raising the income threshold where workers can both work and receive some UI benefits, and the Department of Labor will be encouraging states to do so.
CLARIFYING RULES OF THE UI PROGRAM
This week, the Department of Labor will reaffirm longstanding UI requirements to make sure everyone, including states, employers, and workers, understands the rules of the road for UI benefits. These clarifications will also help ease a return to work. Specifically, the Secretary of Labor will issue a letter to states to reaffirm that individuals receiving UI may not continue to receive benefits if they turn down a suitable job due to a general, non-specific concern about COVID-19. In addition, the President is directing the Secretary of Labor to work with states to reinstate work search requirements for UI recipients, if health and safety conditions allow.
Clarifying Rules of UI Programs: The Department of Labor will clarify that, under all UI programs including the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program put in place last year, workers may not turn down a job due to a general, non-specific concern about COVID-19 and continue to receive benefits. Under the PUA program, a worker may receive benefits if the worker certifies weekly that one of the few specific COVID-related reasons specified by Congress is the cause of their unemployment. These reasons include, for example, that the worker has a child at home who cannot go to school because of the pandemic or that the worker is offered a job at a worksite that is out of compliance with federal or state health requirements. Moreover, workers may not misreport a COVID-related reason for unemployment. The President is directing the Department of Labor to take concrete steps to raise awareness about these and other requirements.
Directing the Secretary of Labor to Work with States on Work Search Requirements: The President is directing the Secretary of Labor to work with states to reinstate work search requirements for UI recipients, if health and safety conditions allow. As part of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act signed into law last year by the previous Administration, states receiving certain federal relief funds were required to waive their requirements that workers search for work in order to continue receiving unemployment benefits. While 29 states have already reinstated their work search requirements, the President is directing the Department of Labor to work with the remaining states, as health and safety conditions allow, to put in place appropriate work search requirements as the economy continues to rebound, vaccinations increase, and the pandemic is brought under control.
A core purpose of the UI program is helping workers get back to work. UI keeps workers connected to the labor market during spells of unemployment by providing workers with income that allows them to look for a job match commensurate with their skills or prior wages. UI recipients also gain access to crucial reemployment services to help with job search or retraining where necessary. Ensuring a good job match is good for workers, as well as employers who want the best candidates for their jobs.
Returning to work during a pandemic is more complicated than searching for work in ordinary times. The COVID-19 pandemic remains a genuine challenge for our country, with infections, hospitalizations, and deaths down substantially when compared with last year, but still at unacceptably high levels. While vaccinations are on the rise with over half of American adults having received at least one shot, around a quarter of those aged 18 to 29 and around a third of those aged 30 to 39 are fully vaccinated. There is a great deal more to do.
At the same time, our economy is growing again at an annual rate of more than 6% and more than 1.5 million jobs have been created over the last three months. Many more workers would like to return to work if they can overcome the barriers that stand in the way. We can and will continue to ensure workers and their families are protected from COVID-19, while also helping those who are able and available to search for good jobs in safe and healthy workplaces.
‘Key to Getting Funds Into Hands of Providers’
Katie Hamm, acting deputy assistant secretary for Early Childhood Development at HHS’ Administration for Children and Families, stated, “Today, the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) released guidance to support states, territories, and tribes in distributing $24 billion in relief funds for child care providers. The guidance explains specific requirements related to the child care stabilization funds and identifies opportunities for states, territories, and tribes to leverage these resources to support a wide range of child care providers.
“The guidance is key to getting funds into the hands of providers that employ essential workers and help make child care accessible to working families. These funds essentially help stabilize the industry and spur economic growth in communities hit hardest by the pandemic. Most of these funds will go to providers and can be used for a variety of operating expenses, including wages and benefits, rent and utilities, personal protective equipment and sanitization and cleaning.
“This guidance lays out a roadmap for stabilizing the child care sector. The document is meant to support and guide child care agencies in awarding grants to child care centers and family child care providers, which are vital to our nation’s economic recovery.”