Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Democrats praise $1T infrastructure bill

PITTSBURGH — Local and state democrats united Thursday afternoon to praise the $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill that just passed in the U.S. Senate.

“Right now, we have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, the largest investment that we have seen in infrastructure in nearly 50 years,” said Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto.

Leaders say the bill could lead to improved roadways, bridges, repaired water lines and new broadband opportunities for rural communities.

>>> RELATED STORY: Senate approves $1T bipartisan infrastructure bill, sending cornerstone of Biden agenda to House

“It’s going to put thousands of our building trades and workers to work, middle class jobs, middle class wages, family-sustaining wages,” said Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald.

When asked, Fitzgerald wasn’t quite clear on exactly how much money could be coming to Western Pennsylvania, but said he is “optimistic” that we’d see a substantial amount.

He and State Senator Jay Costa criticized Republicans who have opposed the bill, including Senator Pat Toomey, as well as the candidates vying for his seat.

“There are folks who don’t see this as an opportunity for Pennsylvania,” Costa said.

In a statement, Senator Toomey defended his opposition, saying in part “There is a need to expand and maintain our nation’s real, physical infrastructure, which is why the federal government spends billions on these projects every year. But this legislation is too expensive, too expansive, too unpaid for, and too threatening to the innovative cryptocurrency economy.”

Republican Sean Parnell, who is running for Toomey’s position, has stated in tweets that he is “all in favor of a clean infrastructure bill” but considers this one a “scam...a Trojan Horse to pass Biden’s $3.5 Trillion budget.”

The bill next heads to the U.S. House.