FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 17, 2021
Contact: WisDems Press (email@example.com)
ICYMI — Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: ‘An essential requirement to function in the 21st century’
VP Kamala Harris stresses importance of access to broadband, clean water
MADISON, Wis. — Vice President Kamala spoke with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Tuesday, celebrating the impact that the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal will have on Wisconsin. This deal, signed by President Biden and delivered by Democrats, reflects the Biden-Harris administration’s ongoing commitment to building back better in the Badger State.
Read the full coverage of Vice President Harris’ interview below:
Access to broadband internet. Clean drinking water. Safer roads.
Those are some of the changes Vice President Kamala Harris said are coming to Wisconsin and other states as a result of the $1.2 trillion infrastructure package that President Joe Biden signed into law Monday afternoon.
“We are really focused on what we need to do around issues like internet and accessible and affordable high speed internet. This is a big issue, I know, for the people in Milwaukee and again around the country,” Harris said Tuesday in an interview with the Journal Sentinel. “Those who have access often deal with the challenge of affordability. And so we intentionally designed the infrastructure act in a way that recognizes that this is a basic issue of infrastructure.”
Under the infrastructure act, Wisconsin is set to receive at least $100 million to help provide broadband coverage, according to the White House. That amount is expected to provide access to at least 318,000 Wisconsin residents.
About 1.2 million Wisconsinites will be eligible for what’s known as the “affordability connectivity benefit,” which Harris described as “$30 a month vouchers for people who qualify.”
“We are absolutely aware that there are differences in terms of geographic locations and we want to meet the need in each of those geographical locations, rural and urban,” Harris said. “Understanding that all of those children — regardless of where they live — all those families, small businesses. This is an essential requirement to function in the 21st century.”
Harris also stressed the importance of lead poisoning prevention, both when it comes to lead paint and lead pipes.
“I think this is one of the biggest issues that has been long standing — it’s impacted people in Milwaukee and around the country — and that’s lead pipes, lead paint,” Harris said. “It’s been pretty well established to cause brain damage and damage to the nervous system.”
Wisconsin is expected to receive about $841 million over five years to improve water quality across the state, according to White House estimates.
Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett said Tuesday that the city did not know yet how much it would receive from the bill but called it an “incredible achievement.”
“It’s a win obviously for President Biden, but I view this as more a win for communities around this nation that need to improve their infrastructure,” said Barrett, a Democrat whom Biden has nominated to serve as ambassador to Luxembourg.