“A Valuable Investment” in Utah: The Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill Becomes Law

The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act will help Utah expand and build roads, mitigate drought conditions, fulfill critical water needs, and prepare for and respond to wildfires without raising taxes or increasing inflation

WASHINGTON—Utahns across the state this week applauded the signing of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act into law. This bipartisan infrastructure legislation, which was negotiated by U.S. Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT) and his colleagues, represents the largest investment in physical infrastructure in our nation’s history. Details on how the bill will benefit Utah can be found here, and text of the legislation can be found here.

“Today’s signing of the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act is a victory for all Americans,” Senator Romney and his colleagues said after the President signed the bill into law yesterday. When Congress puts America’s needs over politics, we make genuine progress. We were proud to work together on this historic investment in our nation’s core infrastructure to modernize roads and bridges, strengthen rail and transit systems, upgrade ports, expand broadband access, improve water systems, and increase the resiliency of the nation’s energy grid. It strengthens our economy without raising taxes or increasing inflation. This legislation will positively impact every American.”

“We’re thrilled with [money] for the Navajo Utah Water Settlement to bring drinking water to our Navajo neighbors. Also, happy to see other Utah priorities, like the Central Utah Project and [money] for water storage, drought, [and] fire mitigation. Thanks to Senator Romney for the great work.” –Utah Governor Spencer Cox

“We are grateful for the funding for the Navajo Utah Water Settlement Act in the infrastructure bill, which will bring desperately needed drinking water to the Utah portion of the Navajo Nation. We commend Governor Cox, Senator Romney, and Senator Sinema for their leadership.” –Jonathan Nez, President, Navajo Nation

“Transportation infrastructure is key to economic vitality and enhancing our quality of life, especially for fast growing states like Utah. We appreciate Senator Romney’s good work to develop and advance provisions in the infrastructure bill that provide Utah with the flexibility and tools we need to tailor transportation solutions that meet our needs.” –Carlos Braceras, P.E., Executive Director, Utah Department of Transportation

“On behalf of cities and towns statewide, we appreciate the historic investment in infrastructure in the IIJA. As the fastest growing state in the country, improving our existing and future infrastructure is critical for our economy, our air quality, and our quality of life. This bill reflects collaboration with our federal partners, creates certainty of funding for our communities, and allows opportunities to tackle our growth related challenges with forward looking solutions.” –Dawn Ramsey, South Jordan Mayor and President, Utah League of Cities and Towns

“Senator Romney, I want to personally thank you for your support of the infrastructure bill and thank you for your leadership on this. Utah really needs this kind of visionary thinking and leadership and I want to offer whatever personal support I can. Again, thank you for your leadership and you have my full personal support.” –Mike Caldwell, Mayor, City of Ogden, and Past President, League of Cities and Towns

“I appreciate Senator Romney’s work to reach a compromise which can garner bipartisan support for an infrastructure bill our country and our state desperately need. Once again, the Senator has demonstrated his commitment to bipartisan leadership. I recognize this is a bill which does not please everyone, however, improving our transportation and broadband infrastructure is critical to our economic competitiveness in global markets and to provide good-paying jobs for our citizens. I support this bill both in my capacity as Mayor and as Chair of the Wasatch Front Regional Council.” –Jeff Silvestrini, Mayor, City of Millcreek and Chair, Wasatch Front Regional Council

“Cache Valley is facing unprecedented growth and at the same time, we find ourselves in the midst of historic drought. The Senate infrastructure legislation makes valuable investments not just in roads, bridges, transit and airports, but also much need water infrastructure and specifically western drought resilience for agriculture and communities, something we desperately need right now.” –Holly Daines, Mayor, Logan City 

“The Salt Lake Chamber supports the bipartisan infrastructure legislation and investment it will bring to Utah — for our families, businesses and communities. It will help Utah expand and repair roads, mitigate drought conditions, fulfill critical water needs, and prepare for and respond to wildfires and other challenges. The investment in Utah’s infrastructure is not only key for our economy, but also vital in the competition of the global market.” –Derek Miller, President and CEO of the Salt Lake Chamber

“The passed and now signed infrastructure bill is a good sign in many ways. First and foremost, it shows that our elected officials can put aside differences and work together for the betterment of the American people. This bill is important to Utah and to us in the South Valley portion of Salt Lake County. The funds in this bill will make broadband more accessible to all, build and upgrade transportation systems, give funding to water storage programs and a long list of other needed services. These funds will create new well-paying jobs and help our businesses and their employees grow and succeed so we can continue to be the shining light in the nation.” –Jay Francis, President and CEO, South Valley Chamber

“America’s productivity, global competitiveness, and quality of life depend on Congress making a durable commitment and clear strategy that will invest in and modernize our crumbling roads, bridges, transit, rail, water and energy infrastructure, broadband access, and more. We applaud Utah’s Senator Romney and the bipartisan Senate group, who’ve worked tirelessly to achieve agreement on this much-needed infrastructure proposal.” –Curtis Blair, President and CEO, Utah Valley Chamber of Commerce

“In Utah, we believe in balanced budgets and fiscal conservatism. However, it is critical that we invest in America’s infrastructure to improve the quality of life for families and businesses. We appreciate the work that Senator Romney has done to reallocate funds that support future infrastructure projects, especially those that impact Utah.” –Angie Osguthorpe, President and CEO, Davis Chamber of Commerce

“Increased funding of the Emergency Watershed Program is critical to Duchesne County’s citizens to help recover from wildfire damages and resulting flooding happening currently. Likewise, Duchesne County supports the increased funding for wildfire mitigation and recovery in the Senate infrastructure package. We thank Senator Romney for his hard work in fighting for these important issues impacting our County today.”  –Duchesne County Commissioners

“We commend the United States Senate and Senator Romney for including in the infrastructure package vital funding for flood control, including repair and replacement of bridges damaged from flooding. We also support funding for airport infrastructure. Uintah County’s residents, like much of rural Utah, are in need of these infrastructure investments and we are hopeful that rural Utah is included in the disbursement of these funds.” –Uintah County Commission 

“In our region (Carbon, Emery, Grand and San Juan Counties), the possibility for funding to improve rural infrastructure is paramount. The region is very grateful for Senator Romney’s effort to provide that funding through the infrastructure bill. Often, projects in the region are funded by mineral lease revenues, which have decreased annually. The region’s needs can be addressed with this bill and provide enhanced sustainable funding options for diversifying our energy and tourism economies. Thank you for supporting rural Utah.” –Geri C. Gamber, Executive Director, SEUALG/SEUEDD

“The funding provided in the bipartisan infrastructure bill will allow us to complete the Central Utah Project in half the time allowing us to deliver much needed additional water to the Wasatch front. This is great news for Utah and our efforts to combat the drought.” –Gene Shawcroft, Commissioner, Central Utah Water Conservancy District General Manager, Utah Colorado River

“Utah is the fastest growing state in the nation and is now facing its worst drought on record. These challenges illustrate the importance of additional investments in water conservation, water supply development and infrastructure. The bipartisan infrastructure bill is a great step forward as Jordan Valley Water Conservancy District works to cultivate a resilient water future for our community.” –Bart Forsyth, General Manager, Jordan Valley Water Conservancy District

“Weber Basin Water Conservancy District would like to express our gratitude for the time and effort expended in securing additional funding for the Department of the Interior’s WaterSMART program. The WaterSMART program has augmented the District’s aggressive water conservation efforts. These efforts include the completion of a Drought Contingency Plan, secondary meter installations, lining of large canals, completion of a water conservation and management plan, and several other educational programs. We recognize the importance of conservation in our often water-short basin due to the effects of drought. Weber Basin Water Conservancy District is continually working to promote the conservation and efficient use of the limited water supply in Northern Utah. Continued funding of programs like WaterSMART ensure the completion of costly conservation programs are prioritized and aggressively pursued.” –Tage Flint, General Manager, Weber Basin Water Conservancy District

“We applaud Senator Romney’s leadership on this important legislation. The bill is critical for Utah’s water future given the current drought situation. It provides robust funding for programs that facilitate water infrastructure investment, comprehensive drought planning, and promotes water conservation measures. Washington County Water Conservancy District’s priorities are made possible through this legislation especially through the new funding opportunities available for water recycling and reuse projects that can help us to achieve the most efficient use of our limited water supplies.” –Zach Renstrom, General Manager, Washington County Water Conservancy District

“UTA strongly supports the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, and we commend the efforts of the bipartisan group of senators, including Senator Mitt Romney, who have tirelessly worked to make this infrastructure bill a reality. This important legislation will provide for much-needed federal investment in our nation’s critical infrastructure, which includes funding for improvements and expansion to our public transit system here in Utah. This bipartisan infrastructure bill will help Utah build out the transportation infrastructure projects needed to address our state’s population growth, air quality, and traffic congestion challenges.” –Carlton Christensen, Chair of the Board of Trustees at Utah Transit Authority

“Wasatch Front Regional Council is grateful for Senator Mitt Romney’s leadership as one of the primary authors and negotiators of the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, giving Utah a seat at the table and advocating for Utah’s and the nation’s pressing infrastructure needs. As the fastest growing state in the nation over the past ten years, Utah is well-poised to put these infrastructure investments to work. Through our extensive and collaborative planning and prioritization processes, Utah’s Unified Transportation Plan identifies the priority investments needed in our roads, transit, and active transportation in the decades to come. This critically important infrastructure legislation, when paired with historic state investments in Utah’s multi-modal transportation system and local investments, will help Utah address its transportation needs into the future. And by reauthorizing the core transportation programs for five years, this legislation provides Utah the stability and predictability it needs for its infrastructure development. This legislation will help us to maintain a strong economy, good mobility and access, and high quality of life.” –Andrew Gruber, Executive Director, Wasatch Regional Council

“We recognize Senator Romney’s significant role in moving ahead a bipartisan infrastructure bill. This bill will provide improved mobility for the citizens of Utah and the United States. We appreciate the critical funding that this bill provides to smaller urban transit systems like Cache Valley Transit so that we can continue to connect individuals to the people and places that matter most.” 
–Todd Beutler, CEO and General Manager, Cache Valley Transit District

“If our nation is going to invest tens of billions of dollars in broadband infrastructure, Americans should have an expectation that those investments will last and deliver meaningful service for decades. Fiber Networks are essential for delivering such service. Funding for such advanced networks should be targeted to those Americans most lacking in the ability to access sufficient service now, with funding directed to additional areas only after we’ve focused first efforts on those Americans most in need. Further, private industry is better at building and managing such fiber networks and any legislation should not favor government networks. If implemented properly, this bill could drive such results—but careful execution will be essential.” –Brock Johansen, CEO, Emery Telcom

“The bipartisan infrastructure bill will be terrific news for the new Salt Lake International Airport. We have three more years of construction in front of us, and this financial support comes at exactly the right time for us to complete this project. The new Salt Lake City International Airport will help propel Utah’s economy forward for decades and decades to come, exactly the intent of infrastructure spending. –Bill Wyatt, Executive Director of the Salt Lake City International Airport

“While the bipartisan infrastructure bill is far from perfect, we applaud Senator Mitt Romney for staying in the discussions and ensuring this bill doesn’t add to the deficit or inflation. Utah will benefit from the much needed infrastructure upgrades included in this bill. Our nation cannot keep kicking the infrastructure improvement can down the road. Thank you, Senator!” –Professional Republican Women of Utah

“The Utah Lake Commission (Commission) wholeheartedly supports the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. The Commission was created with a primary goal of focusing efforts on enhancing Utah Lake to help it flourish as a natural resource and facilitate restoration work to the Lake and its shores. Investments in water infrastructure help the public and the State of Utah assure that one of the State’s largest natural treasures is restored, protected and enhanced. These critical investments will allow current and future generations to enjoy this incredible resource. As we have followed the work of Senator Romney and those members of the Senate involved in putting together this bipartisan infrastructure deal, it has been great to observe the focus given to water resilience and western water infrastructure. The Commission has partnered with the Utah Division of Water Quality on the Utah Lake Water Quality Study and work closely with the Utah Lake Restoration Project that was authorized by the Utah State Legislature and signed by Governor Herbert in 2017, all in an effort to reach similar water goals. Federal funding will play an important role in restoring the lake and we are grateful for Senator Romney’s leadership on this vital issue. Thank you very much for your leadership and support.” –Eric J. Ellis, Executive Director, Utah Lake Commission

“The ASPIRE Center at Utah State University applauds Senator Romney’s bipartisan leadership in support of the infrastructure bill. This timely investment in our roads, bridges, and electric utility infrastructure is absolutely critical to economic development and competitiveness in Utah. These investments in innovation and infrastructure will support rapid growth in the transition to electric passenger vehicles, transit systems, and freight movement in the state and lead to improved air quality and reduced cost to move people and goods.” –Dr. Regan Zane, Director of the Center for Advancing Sustainability through Powered Infrastructure for Roadway Electrification (ASPIRE)

“This historic bill reflects the understanding that our rivers and streams are as much a fundamental part of the nation’s infrastructure as bridges and dams. Among other investments in support of Utah’s rivers, fisheries, and communities, the Act provides $400 million in WaterSMART funds to modernize irrigation infrastructure and improve river flows, and $300 million for stewardship contracts that put people to work on stream and forest health projects inside Utah’s National Forests. We thank Senator Romney for supporting this once-in-a-generation legislation.” –Andy Rasmussen, Utah coordinator for the Angler Conservation Program, Trout Unlimited

“We would like, me representing the Department, to express our appreciation to Senator Romney for the support of the Central Utah Project and for the additional funding that comes at a very critical time. Once completed, this pipeline…will provide water for 100,000 people right here in south Utah County. These funds will also provide much-needed help with our fish, wildlife, and recreation in the area, including support of the endangered species.” –Reed Murray, Program Director, Central Utah Water Project Completion Act Office

“As the fastest growing state in the nation, Utah has critical infrastructure needs. Not only do we need new infrastructure to support our growth, we also need to maintain and replace our aging infrastructure to preserve the quality of life Utah is famous for. We are grateful to Senator Romney and all the work he has brought to us with this bipartisan infrastructure bill…It provides critical infrastructure resources to construct, rebuild, and maintain our roads, water projects, and wildfire management. The funds dedicated to water will help complete the Central Utah Project, bring safe, clean drinking water to the Utah Navajo Nation people, as well as [complete] critical upgrades to drinking water systems throughout the state…These funds will benefit Utahns for many generations.” –Todd Adams, Deputy Director, Utah Division of Natural Resources

“If you were to ask me, and constituents were to ask me, what’s the number one issue facing south Utah County—it’s growth…it’s growth and water…I just want to express my appreciation for Senator Romney. We have tremendous needs in south Utah County and putting this infrastructure in place is huge for this community.” –Mike McKell, Utah State Senator, District 7

“As it’s been stated before: we can’t be here if there’s no water. Our city can’t grow without water and the foresight of the people that came before us saw that we needed water, made these projects available for us, and you see it all come to fruition now…As a city, we love knowing that we have water for our residents and we know we have water for future growth because as we continue to grow, the demand for water is going to keep increasing…So projects like this, and for the good people that make it happen for us, and provide the funding for us, is great and we sure appreciate it.” –Steve Leifson, Mayor, Spanish Fork City

“When we talk about the delivery of water and the importance of it, it’s not just the importance of the arid state that we live in, but south Utah County, as a whole. To see the success of this happening, with the additional funding, is really important for our area—to deliver water at pressure is a huge benefit for the struggles and the problems that we have in Spanish Fork and in this area with growth. This is a huge step to help overcome those. So, I’m excited for this—for the extension of this project—and again grateful to the good Senator for making sure this happened.” –Mike Mendenhall, Councilman and Mayor-elect, Spanish Fork City