There are a few twists and turns in the process of dealing with the infrastructure bill that is before Congress.
The Epoch Times reported yesterday:
Buried in the “Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act” in the U.S. Senate is approval for the Department of Transportation (DOT) to test a new federal tax on every mile driven by individual Americans.
The bill directs Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg to establish a pilot program to demonstrate a national motor vehicle per-mile user fee designed “to restore and maintain the long-term solvency of the Highway Trust Fund.”
The objectives of the pilot program include:
To test the design, acceptance, implementation, and financial sustainability of a national motor vehicle per-mile user fee.
To address the need for additional revenue for surface transportation infrastructure and a national motor vehicle per-mile user fee.
To provide recommendations relating to the adoption and implementation of a national motor vehicle per-mile user fee.
Although the new tax is described as a pilot program and would initially rely upon “volunteers” representing all 50 states, the infrastructure measure would also require the Treasury Department to establish a mechanism to collect motor vehicle per-mile user fees from the participants.
Make no mistake–this will eventually be a tax on all Americans if it is allowed to go through.
On Monday, Breitbart reported:
Earlier in the year, President Joe Biden nominated Gayle (Manchin – Senator Joe Manchin’s wife) to be the co-chair of the Appalachian Regional Commission. This commission is an economic development partnership involving the federal government and 13 states.
The Washington Times reported that the bill’s language makes the Appalachian Regional Commission “set to receive an additional billion dollars over the next four years. The new funding is set to increase the agency’s federal budget by more than 50% annually.” This year the commission requested $235 million from the taxpayer-funded federal government for their operation funding. That was already a 30 percent increase from the $175 million they received in 2020.
For this to possibly secure the senator’s vote, the commission, where his wife makes $160 thousand annually, is given an additional $200 million annually to focus on projects, which equals one billion dollars from fiscal years 2022 to 2026. The Times added:
ARC’s funding increase is significantly larger than other federal regional commissions are set to receive in the infrastructure package.
Apart from money, the infrastructure package also expands the ARC’s authority to increase broadband internet access by providing grants and “technical assistance.”
The text of the bill was originally obtained exclusively by Breitbart News from U.S. Senate sources not authorized to leak it after showing “concern that the murky and secretive process behind this bill may have led to widespread corruption throughout its nearly three thousand pages.”
When there are almost three thousand pages in a bill, there are bound to be some questionable items.
And finally, Zero Hedge posted the following today:
An already-tenuous $1 trillion infrastructure spending package has been thrown into further disarray this week, after lawmakers filed nearly 300 amendments to the legislation, according to The Hill, which notes that in several instances “senators are holding their colleagues’ amendments hostage by objecting to voting on them unless their own priorities are also guaranteed a vote.”