From left, Vermont Gov. Phil Scott, Denver Mayor Michael Hancock, National Economic Council Director Brian Deese and Special Assistant to the President Michael Collins attend a meeting hosted by U.S. President Joe Biden about his proposed infrastructure plan in the Roosevelt Room at the White House on July 14, 2021, in Washington, D.C. The meeting included a bipartisan group of city and state political leaders, Vice President Kamala Harris, Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo and Labor Secretary Martin Walsh. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden met with a group of governors and mayors on Wednesday as he seeks to build support for a massive federal infrastructure package awaiting action from Congress.
The local officials joining Biden in the Oval Office included Mayor Michael Hancock, of Denver, as well as Mayors Nan Whaley of Dayton, Ohio and Kate Gallego of Phoenix, Ariz.
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Earlier this week, a bipartisan group of 369 mayors sent a letter to Congress, urging lawmakers to swiftly vote on the infrastructure funding agreement reached last month.
The mayors touted that $1.2 trillion proposal as a long-term investment that would “help make our economy more sustainable, resilient, and just.”
Biden has called for a “dual-track” approach to infrastructure.
He’s urging votes on not only the framework for infusion of more money into road, bridge, transit and other traditional infrastructure projects but also a second measure that would include new money for “human infrastructure” programs like expanding access to child care and education.
Passing both proposals through Congress will be tricky. Democrats have only slim majorities in each chamber, leaving little room for losing any support within their own caucuses.
“We have a chance to solve these problems, a bipartisan chance to solve these problems. Create millions of jobs — literally,” Biden told the mayors and governors as Wednesday’s meeting began, according to a pool report.
“Time to stop talking about it and time to get you the resources,” Biden added.
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