Building America Back Better

Read our latest Government Affairs Building Back Better newsletter:

Witnessing History: IBEW Members at White House for Infrastructure Bill Signing

Alongside more than 10 IBEW members and a bipartisan group of lawmakers at the White House on Nov. 15, President Biden made official one of the biggest infrastructure investments in U.S. history. Touching nearly every sector of the U.S. economy, the bill was touted on a level comparable to the construction of the transcontinental railroad in the late 19th century and the interstate highway system in the 1950s.

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IBEW Lobbying Effort Hours before House Vote

Passage by the House of Representatives came only hours after the IBEW launched a lobbying effort involving hundreds of IBEW members working the phones in an all-out push for a vote on the infrastructure legislation that ultimately passed both chambers with bipartisan support.

Winning Passage of the Build Back Better Act

Relief for middle-class families was one step closer with the passage by the House of Representatives of the Build Back Better Act on November 19. Like the infrastructure bill, the Build Back Better Act will make transformative investments in future generations, the health care system, and public schools. The nearly $2 trillion bill also includes $555 billion for clean energy tax credits and climate funding, expanded Affordable Care Act tax credits, and caps on childcare and out-of-pocket prescription drug costs. In addition, the bill sets aside $20 billion for workforce development activities, including $6 billion in funding to expand apprenticeship programs over the next five years.

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Calling IBEW Members ‘The Best in the World,’ Biden Talks Renewables at DOE Site

It was almost déjà vu when Denver Local 68 journeyman wireman Julian Aguilar met President Biden at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory on September 14 outside Denver.

“I know I just now met Joe Biden for the first time in my life, but I feel like he’s had my back for years,” said Aguilar, a second-generation member of Local 68. “President Joe Biden is not just pro-union. He’s pro-people. He’s pro-America.”

Biden saluted IBEW electricians as “the best in the world,” as he thanked Aguilar and discussed the urgency of renewable energy.

“Whether you’re an engineer at a lab bench, an IBEW worker working on a turbine, [whether] you work for a power company or a small construction business, everyone has a role to play in building a clean energy future and a stronger economy,” Biden said at the Department of Energy site where Local 68 members are at work on a solar installation project.

Supporting Infrastructure Legislation to Shore up America

America’s rundown infrastructure is heading for a makeover following the passage in the Senate of the sweeping historic legislation in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act on August 9. Together with the budget bill under consideration in the House of Representatives, hundreds of thousands of jobs will be created as the Biden Build Back Better agenda comes to fruition. Over the summer of 2022, IBEW members sent 12,700 emails to congressional offices and 440 letters to the editor through the IBEW Action website at www.ibewaction.org.

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Touting ‘Build Back Better,’ Biden Tours Cincinnati Training Center

President Joe Biden took his pitch for a massive investment in infrastructure and American labor directly to the workers on July 21, touring the IBEW-NECA Electrical Training Center in Cincinnati to learn about what IBEW electricians do every day on the job.

“The Build Back Better plan that President Biden is proposing will be a game-changer for union tradesmen and tradeswomen,” said International President Lonnie Stephenson. “But we can’t overstate how important it is that a sitting president showed up at our training center, asked genuine questions about the work that we do and used the word ‘union’ again and again.”

For more on this story, read the September issue of the Electrical Worker.

Negotiating a Bipartisan Deal with Congress for More Jobs, Cleaner Infrastructure

President Joe Biden proposed the largest investment in American infrastructure since World War II at the end of March, after being introduced by Pittsburgh Local 29 member Mike Fiore. Four weeks later, he renewed his call for the $2.3 trillion American Jobs Plan from the House floor, again with the IBEW at the heart of his pitch. President Biden and Congress are making their way toward passing $4 trillion in spending that will upgrade America’s flagging infrastructure, better position the U.S. as a global competitor and aggressively combat climate change.

As a result of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework deal reached on June 24, within grasp are plans to modernize the electric grid, expand access to broadband internet, invest and electrify the transportation sector, including public passenger rail, ports, roads, bridges and airports. The framework will create and sustain good-paying union jobs when paired with the appropriate labor protections.

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