WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Chellie Pingree (D-Maine) today celebrated the U.S. House of Representatives’ passage of the Build Back Better Act, the most beneficial bill for working families enacted since The New Deal. The bill will prepare the nation for the next century through unprecedented investments in climate-smart programs and the establishment of a safety net that supports the needs of Americans from birth into old age. The legislation is paid for with new revenues from the wealthiest Americans and big corporations which have long skirted their tax responsibilities at the expense of middle-class families.
“The Build Back Better Act will create a brighter future for America and improve Mainers’ quality of life for decades to come. This historic bill puts the country on the fast track to achieving 100 percent clean energy by giving Americans the resources to go green at home, on the road, and even on the farm. It will significantly lower costs for parents and caregivers while creating a landmark paid leave policy to help balance family and work,” said Congresswoman Pingree. “From skyrocketing prescription drug costs to affordable housing, the Build Back Better Act takes aim at the serious challenges facing our nation that have been ignored for too long. It is with immense pride and hope that I cast my vote for Build Back Better today because while I am a member of Congress, I am also a mother and grandmother who wants to leave this country better than I found it for the next generation.”
The Build Back Better Act will:
Make the Largest Investment to Combat Climate Crisis in History
Build Back Better is the largest effort to combat climate change in American history, investing $555 billion over 10 years in clean energy and climate investments.
Providing green tax credits that will save the average American family hundreds of dollars per year in energy costs.
Ensuring expansive clean energy technology – from wind turbine blades to solar panels to electric cars – will be built in the United States, creating hundreds of thousands of good jobs here at home.
Increasing climate resilience of coastal communities and sustaining coastal and marine resource-dependent communities.
Establishing a Green Bank to deploy $29 billion to nonprofit, state, and local climate finance institutions that support the rapid deployment of low- and zero-emission technologies, including zero-emission vehicle supply equipment.
Reducing water pollution by investing $2.125 billion in water infrastructure including sewer overflow and stormwater reuse projects.
Investing over $27 billion in climate-smart agricultural conservation initiatives, the largest investment in conservation since the Dust Bowl.
Lower Health Care Costs
Directing Medicare to negotiate lower drug costs for seniors and halting Big Pharma’s outrageous price hikes above inflation for all Americans.
Ensuring Americans don't pay more than $35 per month for insulin out of pocket no matter their deductible.
Creating a new, out-of-pocket cap of $2,000 on what seniors pay for their drugs in Medicare Part D.
Expanding the ACA to make coverage more affordable for those who buy insurance on their own. The bill dramatically lowers premiums in the ACA Marketplace, with individuals seeing a reduction in their premiums of more than $800 per year, and expands the ACA to cover those in the states that have refused to adopt the Medicaid expansion.
Helping older Americans access affordable hearing care by expanding Medicare.
Lower Child Care & Family Care Costs
Saving most families more than half their current spending on child care, ensuring the vast majority of families will have to pay no more than 7 percent of their income for child care.
Expanding the basic promise of free schooling in America for the first time in 100 years with universal pre-school for all 3- and 4-year olds.
Establishing a universal and permanent paid family and medical leave program, providing four weeks of paid parental, family caregiving, and medical leave.
Extending the Biden Child Tax Credit, which helps more than 35 million families
Expanding access to high-quality home care for older adults and people with disabilities.
Cutting the cost of postsecondary education by increasing the Pell Grant and investing in community colleges
Reducing families’ housing costs and expanding housing options, with a major housing initiative.
Dramatically expanding access to free, healthy school meals for children and provides low-income families with support to buy groceries when school is out.
Provide Long Overdue Protections for Immigrant Families
Providing a five-year temporary period of stay, including work authorization and protection from deportation, for undocumented immigrants who have been in the United States for 10 years, providing stability to an estimated 7.1 million people, including 1.6 million Dreamers, 360,000 TPS recipients, and 3.6 million essential workers, including 1 million farm workers.
Providing $2.8 billion to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to help increase capacity and reduce the existing case processing backlog, which has increased significantly in recent years.
Recapturing lost family-based, employment-based, or diversity visas that went unused contrary to congressional intent or due to travel restrictions, and provides exemptions from numerical limitations on immigrant visas.