It’s been a busy few weeks in Washington as Congress works to check off items ahead of August recess. Last week, the House passed H.R. 2, the Moving Forward Act, which compiled infrastructure priorities from numerous committees. While the bill itself will not be taken up in the Senate, APGA has been working with committees and House offices to fine-tune some component items that will be considered in stand-alone legislation down the road.
This week, APGA voiced support for two critical legislative initiatives. APGA joined its utility industry partners in calling for fully funding the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). APGA's President & CEO Dave Schryver provided a quote for the larger press release which you can read here https://www.aga.org/news/energy-industry-pushing-congress-for-critical-energy-assistance-dollars/.
Last Thursday, Sen. Roger Wicker (R-MS) and Michael Bennet (D-CO) unveiled the American Infrastructure Bond Act. This bill would allow for municipalities to offer taxable municipal bonds for infrastructure projects, which interest payments would be partially offset by a Treasury payment. This provides municipalities with another tool to finance much-needed public works projects, including gas infrastructure improvements, expansions, and prepay contracts. APGA was noted in the press release from Sen. Wicker’s office which you can read at https://www.wicker.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/2020/7/wicker-bennet-introduce-american-infrastructure-bonds-act.
APGA also continues to advocate for our members’ priorities in the upcoming coronavirus Phase 4 package. This week, APGA members took action and urged their Senators to ensure municipal utilities were eligible to receive federal aid sent to localities. Members forwarded a letter signed by APGA, AMWA, and NACWA highlighting the needs of municipal utilities in the next relief package which you can read here https://community.apga.org/viewdocument/june-6-letter-in-support-of-51.
For questions on this article, please contact Doug MacGillivray of APGA staff by phone at 202-464-2742 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.