What Does Delaware Need From The American Jobs Plan?
A few weeks ago president Biden released his American Jobs Plan to make the infrastructure better and get Americans back to work. The price tag for this plan is nearly 2.3 trillion dollars. While this is being negotiated in Congress to try and get this passed President Biden said he is willing to negotiate, but he’s not going to accept doing nothing to fix our infrastructure.
The White House released a state by state plan that highlights what needs to be done in all 50 states, including the District of Columbia. The fact sheets highlight how many roads and bridges need repairs, the percentage of those without broadband internet, and many other things.
In this article we are going to focus specifically on the state of Delaware and what needs to be done in the state to make it better. When looking at the overall infrastructure it earned a D from the infrastructure report card.
According to the fact sheet, there are 19 bridges and over 250 miles of highway that require repairs. Since the year 2011, commute times have increased by 5%, and on average, drivers are having to pay 456 dollars per year on repairs for their cars due to driving on roads that are in poor condition.
Public transportation is also included in this bill. Residents of Delaware are spending an extra 87% of their time when they commute via public transportation. Along with this, non-white households are 3.7 times more likely to use public transportation as their main means for commuting. 10% of the trains and other transit vehicles in the state are past their usable lifespan.
Over the past 10 years, Delaware has experienced 10 extreme weather events, which has cost the state up to 2 billion dollars in damages. In order to have clean drinking water within the next 20 years, the state is going to require 806 million dollars in additional funding.
Broadband is a key part of this bill. About 4% of the residents in Delaware live in areas where there is no option for reliable internet speeds. Beyond this, 40% of residents live in areas where there is only one provider of reliable internet. Reliable broadband internet could very well be too expensive for some, as 11% of households in Delaware do not have an internet subscription.
Due in part to a lack of available and affordable housing, 50,000 renters are rent burdened, meaning that more than 30% of their paycheck is going towards paying their rent. Beyond this, an average low-income family is spending 8–10% of their paycheck on electricity costs.
Childcare is another topic being discussed for the American Jobs Plan. In Delaware, there is an estimated 102 million dollar gap between the amount of money schools actually have in order to make necessary repairs and the amount of money they actually need. Alongside this, 25% of residents live in an area where childcare is not available to them.
Manufacturing makes up more than 6% of the total output in the state of Delaware, employing 28,000 workers, or 5.9% of their workforce. In 2019, 13,943 people were employed in the field of clean energy. Delaware is home to more than 71,000 veterans. 9.7% of these veterans are women, and 51% of them are over the age of 65.
To see what is exactly in the bill and how much money is in each section, listen to this episode of Blind Boys Politics.