PRESIDENT Joe Biden has bowed to pressure from Senate Republicans and reduced the infrastructure package, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said.
Psaki said today that Biden’s administration decided to reduce the cost of the plan from $2.25 trillion to $1.7 trillion after negotiations with Republicans.
During a Friday briefing Psaki said in the American Jobs Plan counteroffer there will be fewer funds for research and development.
There will also be a reduction in the $100 billion proposed for broadband expansion to $65 billion
Psaki said the counteroffer will reduce funding for roads and bridges to “come closer” to $299 billion proposed by the Republican senators.
“In our view, this is the art of seeking common ground,” she said.
“This proposal exhibits a willingness to come down in size, giving on some areas that are important to the president … while also staying firm in areas that are most vital to building our infrastructure and industries of the future.”
However she added that the counteroffer does not change Biden’s proposal to raise corporate taxes to 28 per cent.
“The president is not willing to raise taxes on Americans earning under $400,000 per year through a gas tax or through user fees.
“He believes the extraordinarily wealthy, that companies that many of whom have not paid taxes in recent years can afford a modest increase to pay for middle-class jobs,” she said.
Biden’s plan would see raising revenue by increasing taxes on higher-income individuals and households.
The president’s tax hike will not target families earning up to $400,000, and the threshold for individual filers will be the same amount.
Biden’s initial American Jobs Plan would focus on money for physical infrastructure like roads, bridges, rail lines, water and sewer systems as well as improvements to the power grid, clean energy and energy efficiency projects.
Earlier this month Republicans released a $568billion counter-proposal that focused mainly on roads, bridges and transit systems.