President Joe Biden signed into law on Nov. 15 a sweeping infrastructure investment bill that should be as good for the trucking and construction industries — and by proxy the tire industry — as it will be for the actual roads and bridges that will be updated.
While the $1.2 trillion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) likely won't be enough to accomplish the Biden administration's ambitious overall infrastructure plan, it's a start. Legislators at all levels often kick the "infrastructure" can down the road because it is so expensive to address, and the gains aren't realized immediately.
So, whatever the bill may be lacking, we'll take what we got.
Much of the funds will go, in some respect, toward the supply chain. Aside from actual tire sales to support the work, the tire and auto parts industries may benefit most from supply-chain improvements.
The bill includes $110 billion to repair and upgrade roads and bridges. There are around 173,000 miles of road and 45,000 bridges in the U.S. rated in poor condition, the government said. That's around 20% of all roads and bridges. The bill will fix only the worst of the worst, but, again, it's a start.
There are funds to upgrade aging ports and rail lines and to boost broadband internet — especially to the most underserved areas of the country. There also are funds earmarked to improve road safety, address pollution and clean brownfield sites.