Granholm says over 3,500 bridges and 7,500 miles of highways in Pennsylvania would be immediate beneficiaries.By Jon Delano

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Pennsylvania is going to get billions of dollars under President Joe Biden’s bipartisan infrastructure deal that Congress approved last Friday.

In an interview seen only on KDKA, political editor Jon Delano spoke with U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm, who says states like Pennsylvania are big winners.

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For years, everybody has known America’s infrastructure was crumbling. But until now no president, Republican or Democratic, has been able to cut a deal to invest money into rebuilding. That changed Friday when the Democratic U.S. House, with 13 Republicans, approved a compromise bill that passed the U.S. Senate earlier this year.

It’s a $1.2 trillion bill, a lot less than some think is needed, but a start at rebuilding roads, bridges, airports, ports, railroads and high-speed broadband service in all parts of the nation.

Granholm said over 3,500 bridges and 7,500 miles of highways in Pennsylvania would be immediate beneficiaries, along with many other infrastructure needs.

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“Pennsylvania is going to get $1.6 billion for bridge and road repair. Under the bipartisan infrastructure deal, especially older cities have a lot of lead pipes, lead pipes are going to be removed,” Granholm said. “There are a lot of homes that have leaky windows, leaky insulation. There is a huge amount for weatherization of homes. There is a huge amount for capping of abandoned oil and gas wells.”

Overall, road and bridge work in this state totals a minimum of $13 billion. Other big-ticket items include $2.8 billion for public transit, $1.4 billion for water infrastructure to provide safe drinking water and $355 million for airport upgrades.

Granholm said the bill also includes money to upgrade the power grid with more storm-resilient power lines and to install electric vehicle charging stations coast to coast.

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Local Republican congressmen voted against the bipartisan bill, including U.S. Rep. Mike Kelly — who called the spending inflationary — and U.S. Rep. Guy Reschenthaler — who called the bill socialist. Democrats U.S. Reps. Mike Doyle and Conor Lamb supported the measure.