The US Senate has officially passed a $1 trillion infrastructure bill with an arguably promising bipartisan vote of 69-30. However, this was after much of the original proposal hit the chopping block. It still benefits electric cars, but without reconciliation down the road, it may not be enough.
The bill marks one of few bipartisan agreements coming out of the Biden Administration's "Build Back Better" plans, and it marks a significant win for Biden, despite major cuts to the original plan. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer is already making references to an upcoming budget resolution to help Biden and the Democrats get what they're aiming for. In the meantime, the bill will head back to the House, though it's on recess until late September.
As far as EVs are concerned, the most promising part of the bill includes some $7.5 billion for EV charging infrastructure. John Bozzella, CEO of the Alliance for Automotive Innovation, shared:
“While today’s action represents a strong first step, collaboration on a comprehensive strategy will be key moving forward."
“We are working with Congress to craft the additional complementary policies necessary to further boost investment in the domestic EV supply chain and incentives that encourage consumer adoption of EVs. Realizing these necessary conditions for a successful EV market will be critical to boosting EV sales from just over 2 percent of vehicle sales now to achieve a goal of 40 to 50 percent EV penetration by the end of the decade.”
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi has already said she won't allow a vote to proceed on the infrastructure package until the Senate passes the "broader economic plan." In addition, once the bill moves back to the House, other changes will likely be made. Many EV owners and supporters of the segment had hoped for a refreshed federal EV tax credit, along with other potential perks to promote EV adoption. However, there is no such language in the bill as it currently stands.
Regardless of any reconciliation or budget resolution, all US states will likely see notable benefits from the bill as it stands. It includes over $100 billion for new roads and bridges, $73 billion for power grid improvements, $66 billion for rail, and much more.
We'll have to wait and see how quickly Congress can move forward with the bill and related measures. As further information becomes available, we'll continue providing updates.