The historic passing of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act out of the United States Senate is a major step forward to repairing our nation’s long-time crumbling infrastructure. This $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill will help our nation rebuild crucial infrastructure to ensure a prosperous economy. By repairing roads, bridges, water infrastructure, broadband internet, and more we will see increased job opportunities and an overall competitive advantage. Not only is this a step forward economically, but also politically with bipartisan support demonstrating democracy is still the pinnacle of what we stand for as a nation. Our Chamber has made infrastructure a priority topic during delegation visit trips to Washington D.C. over the last number of years. I applaud our leaders and politicians for careful deliberation and uniting on this crucial piece of legislation that will positively impact the quality of life for all Americans.

Investments in Arizona’s infrastructure have been an ongoing goal towards the overall prosperity of our state. As the state continues to be a leader in population growth, we must repair, rebuild, and prepare for the future. Alongside regional growth, the impact of wildfires, rainfall fluctuations, and the pandemic continue to burden the existing infrastructure and systems in place. In Arizona, roads and water are our primary infrastructure concerns. The state’s population growth and increased tourism have significantly impacted the demand on roadways, while federal, state, and local funding struggle to keep up with expansion, maintenance, and modernization needs. Additionally, the state’s water infrastructure remains a critical priority with aging dams and levees requiring long overdue renovations and repairs. Arizona has also seen major funding shortfalls for safe drinking water as well as wastewater repairs to keep up with population expansion.

As more businesses move to the Valley, the Chamber continues to be a steadfast supporter of regional transportation by supporting a variety of efforts including the city’s past transportation plan and light rail expansion. I am pleased to see the mobility needs of present and future residents, visitors, and businesses continues to be a top priority in the City of Phoenix’s Infrastructure Strategic Plan.

As we look forward, I hope to see a continued investment from the people of Arizona towards local infrastructure and transportation funding by renewing Prop 400, the voter-approved half-cent sales tax for transportation set to expire in 2025. Ultimately, it takes everyone locally, state-wide, and nationally to do their part in investing in Arizona’s infrastructure. But through recent legislation and strategic planning I am confident we are on the right track towards a prosperous, and infrastructurally strong Arizona.

Posted by Annelise Patterson