October 28, 2021

Rep. Mike Levin Statement on Build Back Better Act and the Bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act

Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Representative Mike Levin (D-CA) issued the following statement on his support for the Build Back Better Act and the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which include key priorities for North County San Diego and South Orange County.

“We are on the verge of passing historic, transformative legislation to lift up working families, create millions of good-paying jobs, and make the largest investment in our nation’s history to combat the climate crisis. Both the Build Back Better Act and the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act include key local priorities I fought for to support North County San Diego and South Orange County, and I’m proud we are closer than ever to delivering on those priorities.

“With the Build Back Better Act, families all over the country will now be able to afford childcare so they can go back to work; universal preschool will give kids everywhere the educational head start they deserve; and 125,000 children in my district will continue to benefit from the expanded Child Tax Credit that helps parents make ends meet. Nearly nine million more children will have access to free school meals and more than 29 million children will receive nutrition assistance over the summer, thanks to provisions similar to my Stop Child Hunger Act. Millions of Americans will now pay less in health care premiums, receive better home care, and have hearing coverage through Medicare. Along with historic investments to provide more affordable housing, expand Pell Grants, and cut taxes for 17 million low-wage workers by strengthening the Earned Income Tax Credit, we are growing our economy from the bottom up and ensuring all Americans can create better lives for themselves and their children.

“There are several provisions I fought for in these bills that will have a particular impact on North County San Diego and South Orange County families. The Build Back Better Act includes a provision similar to my American Coasts and Oceans Protection Act prohibiting new offshore drilling activity off the California coast and elsewhere, which will help prevent catastrophic spills like the one we recently experienced off the coast of Orange County. The bipartisan infrastructure bill also includes $350 million for the Army Corps of Engineers to support efforts like the Encinitas-Solana Beach Shoreline Protection project and the Oceanside Special Shoreline Study. It also includes $1 billion for water recycling and, similar to my Desalination Development Act, $250 million for desalination projects. This funding will make our beaches safer, protect the rail corridor on our coast, and ensure our community has independent sources of fresh water. I’m also proud that both bills invest more than $20 billion in wildfire risk reduction to protect our communities that are constantly threatened by fires and unhealthy smoke. And, as the representative for thousands of veterans and military families around Camp Pendleton, I’m proud we are investing $5 billion in VA infrastructure and services to ensure we’re providing those who have served our country with the best possible facilities and care.

“I’m also incredibly proud to advance the largest single investment in climate action in American history. As I’ve said many times before, the climate crisis is the defining challenge of our time. This legislation represents the action we need to cut greenhouse gas emissions and protect our planet for future generations. These bills ensure the clean energy technology of the future is manufactured right here in America, creating hundreds of thousands of good-paying clean energy jobs. These bills will facilitate the transition to electric vehicles, reduce energy costs for consumers, and advance environmental justice for communities that have suffered the worst effects of pollution and climate change.

“This historic progress is fully paid for without raising taxes on small businesses or anyone making less than $400,000. We are simply asking the very largest corporations and wealthiest Americans to pay their fair share, reversing the massive giveaway they received in the 2017 Republican tax bill and investing that revenue in working families.

“Finally, Americans will see that our government can work for them, not just the wealthy and well-connected. They will see the power and potential of our democracy embodied in legislation that tackles the most pressing issues of our time and puts working people first. While these bills aren’t perfect and there’s much more we need to do, this legislation will transform the lives of Americans everywhere, including our district, for the better. I look forward to sending both bills to President Biden’s desk.”

Text of the Build Back Better Act is available here, and a fact sheet is available here. A fact sheet on the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act is available here.