Clogged US ports get federal money to speed up the flow of goods and cut prices under Biden’s infrastructure plan

WASHINGTON — Obstructed U.S. ports have access to nearly $450 million in federal infrastructure act money from President Joe Biden as part of the administration’s efforts to ease supply chain congestion and make lower prices for American consumers.

The grants aim to reduce bottlenecks that have slowed the flow of goods to store shelves and driven up costs, according to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, who announced the availability of a first batch of competitive grants for ports which will be double last year’s amount every year. for five years.

The grants are part of several pots of money under the $1 trillion law that Buttigieg’s department plans to direct toward medium- and long-term relief to the nation’s supply chain, which officials administration have described as somewhat outdated and broken.

Acknowledging that upgrades will take time, Biden officials have been largely reluctant to give assurances that Americans could see clear changes in their lives ahead of the 2022 midterm elections.

WE. ports will have until May to apply for the grants, which will be awarded in the fall and which Buttigieg says are intended “to help ports improve their infrastructure – to move goods more efficiently and to help control the costs to American families”.

Last year, his department took interim steps to unclog the supply chain and limit inflationary pressures, awarding $241 million in grants, including $52.3 million to help increase rail capacity at the port of Long Beach, California. It aims to move major ports to longer workdays and improve recruitment and retention in the trucking industry.

Biden acknowledged potential additional pain for consumers if US sanctions against Russian President Vladimir Putin over Ukraine end up limiting Russian oil and natural gas exports and sending global energy prices skyrocketing. .

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