President Biden Unveils $2.2 Trillion Infrastructure Plan
The Biden administration recently released the American Jobs Plan, a comprehensive plan to overhaul the country’s infrastructure. The plan contains proposals for specifics ranging from surface transportation, the power grid, clean energy investments, manufacturing and affordable housing.
Most of the plan will require congressional action and as a result it does not provide detail for every specific issue area. There is also currently no legislation in Congress, but that is expected in the coming weeks and months. Below are some highlights from Biden’s plan:
- Fix highways, rebuild bridges, upgrade ports, airports and transit systems. The President’s plan calls for modernizing 20,000 miles of highways, roads, and main-streets. It will fix the ten most economically significant bridges in the country in need of reconstruction. It also will repair the worst 10,000 smaller bridges, providing critical linkages to communities. And, it will replace thousands of buses and rail cars, repair hundreds of stations, renew airports, and expand transit and rail into new communities.
- Produce, preserve, and retrofit more than a million affordable, resilient, accessible, energy efficient, and electrified housing units. Through targeted tax credits, formula funding, grants, and project-based rental assistance, President Biden’s plan will extend affordable housing rental opportunities to underserved communities nationwide, including rural and tribal areas.
- Build and rehabilitate more than 500,000 homes for low- and middle-income homebuyers. President Biden is calling on Congress to take immediate steps to spur the construction and rehabilitation of homes for underserved communities. Specifically, he is calling on Congress to pass the Neighborhood Homes Investment Act (NHIA). Offering $20 billion worth of NHIA tax credits over the next five years will, according to the Administration, result in approximately 500,000 homes built or rehabilitated.
- Eliminate exclusionary zoning and harmful land use policies. President Biden is calling on Congress to enact a new competitive grant program that awards flexible and attractive funding to jurisdictions that take concrete steps to eliminate “exclusionary zoning laws” to produce affordable housing.
- Address longstanding public housing capital needs. President Biden is calling on Congress to invest $40 billion to improve the infrastructure of the public housing system in America. This funding will address critical life-safety concerns, mitigate imminent hazards to residents, and undertake energy efficiency measures which will significantly reduce ongoing operating expenses.
- Put union building trade workers to work upgrading homes and businesses. President Biden’s plan will upgrade homes through block grant programs, the Weatherization Assistance Program, and by extending and expanding home and commercial efficiency tax credits. President Biden’s plan also will establish a $27 billion Clean Energy and Sustainability Accelerator to mobilize private investment into distributed energy resources; retrofits of residential, commercial and municipal buildings; and clean transportation.
President Biden’s plan also calls for passage of the PRO Act, which makes sweeping changes to federal labor laws, and potential tax increases. Below are some of the tax proposals in the plan:
- Set the Corporate Tax Rate at 28 percent;
- Increase the minimum tax on U.S. corporations to 21 percent and calculate it on a country-by-country basis;
- Enact a Minimum Tax on Large Corporations’ “Book Income”; and
- Increased financial enforcement for corporations.
BSCAI will be closely monitoring the activity in Congress as it pertains to infrastructure legislation and will be sure to keep members updated on the latest developments.
Biden Administration Releases Made in America Tax Plan Report
Last week, the Department of the Treasury released the Made in America Tax Plan Report to provide additional depth on the tax provisions included in President Biden’s infrastructure proposal announced earlier this month. According to the Biden administration, the goal of the Made in America Tax Plan is to make American companies and workers more competitive by eliminating incentives to offshore investment, substantially reducing profit shifting, countering tax competition on corporate rates, and providing tax preferences for clean energy production.
The tax plan would generate new funding to pay for a sustained increase in investments in infrastructure, research, and support for manufacturing, fully paying for the investments in Biden’s infrastructure plan over a 15-year period and continuing to generate revenue on a permanent basis.
The Made in America Tax Plan calls for the following changes to the tax code:
- Raising the corporate income tax rate to 28 percent;
- Strengthening the global minimum tax for U.S. multinational corporations;
- Reducing incentives for foreign jurisdictions to maintain ultra-low corporate tax rates by encouraging global adoption of robust minimum taxes;
- Enacting a 15 percent minimum tax on book income of large companies that report high profits, but have little taxable income;
- Replacing incentives that reward excess profits from intangible assets with more generous incentives for new research and development;
- Replacing fossil fuel subsidies with incentives for clean energy production; and
- Ramping up enforcement to address corporate tax avoidance.
BSCAI is currently reviewing the Biden administration’s infrastructure and will provide members with relevant updates. It is important to note that Biden’s proposals have not yet been drafted into legislative text.
President Biden Signs Bill Extending PPP Application Deadline to May 31
President Biden recently signed legislation to extend the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan application deadline from March 31 to May 31. The bill gives the Small Business Administration (SBA) authority to continue processing pending applications for 30 days after May 31.
To apply for a PPP loan, please visit the SBA PPP website. Recent reports indicate that the PPP could run out of funding later thing spring so interested members are encouraged to complete their applications as soon as possible.
SBA to Increase Lending Limit for Economic Injury Disaster Loans
The Small Business Administration (SBA) has announced they are increasing the amount small businesses and non-profit organizations can borrow through its COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program. Starting the week of April 6, 2021, the SBA is raising the loan limit for the COVID-19 EIDL program from 6-months of economic injury with a maximum loan amount of $150,000 to up to 24-months of economic injury with a maximum loan amount of $500,000.
Businesses that receive a loan subject to the current limits do not need to submit a request for an increase at this time. SBA will reach out directly via email and provide more details about how businesses can request an increase closer to the April 6 implementation date. Any new loan applications and any loans in process when the new loan limits are implemented will automatically be considered for loans covering 24 months of economic injury up to a maximum of $500,000.
This new relief follows SBA’s previous March 12, 2021 announcement that the agency would extend deferment periods for all disaster loans, including COVID-19 EIDLs, until 2022 to offer more time for businesses to build back. In order to shift all EIDL payments to 2022, SBA will extend the first payment due date for disaster loans made in 2020 to 24-months from the date of the note and to 18-months from the date of the note for all loans made in the calendar year 2021.
Questions about SBA COVID-19 EIDL and disaster loan payments can be emailed to DisasterCustomerService@sba.gov or directed to SBA’s Customer Service Center at 1-800-659-2955.
DOL Announces Relaunch of Persuader Reporting Orientation Program
The Department of Labor (DOL) announced last week that its Office of Labor-Management Standards (OLMS) has relaunched the Persuader Reporting Orientation Program (PROP), a compliance assistance initiative to inform employers and their representatives about potential reporting obligations under the Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act (LMRDA). The PROP initiative was in effect previously from 2011 to 2016.
The LMRDA requires employers and labor relations consultants to file reports with OLMS on agreements or arrangements to persuade employees concerning their rights to organize and bargain collectively. Employers and consultants must also report agreements or arrangements to supply the employer with certain information concerning the activities of employees or a labor organization in connection with a labor dispute involving such employer.
PROP enables OLMS to contact employers involved in representation elections – and any other parties that have notified the National Labor Relations Board of their status as representatives for such employers – to inform them of potential LMRDA reporting requirements. OLMS will provide information on where to locate reporting forms and instructions, and how to contact OLMS to ask questions or receive additional information. OLMS will also provide a fact sheet on employer-consultant agreements.