Clyburn visits Charleston to talk about infrastructure bill’s impact in SC

Published: Nov. 9, 2021 at 1:16 PM EST|Updated: Nov. 9, 2021 at 7:52 PM EST
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NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Congressman Jim Clyburn says he believes the newly-passed infrastructure bill will allow every household in the state to be connected to broadband internet service.

“You can’t have efficient, effective delivery of medicine without broadband,” Clyburn said. “Teleheatlh and telemedicine has got to be there. You cannot have adequate education without broadband. Businesses can’t operate can’t operate in just-in-time delivery, they’ve got to have broadband.”

He said during a news conference Tuesday that broadband is easily his top priority for the state.

“I am a believer that broadband is to the 21st century to what electricity was to the 20th century,” he said.

With nearly $600 billion in new federal aid, the historic investment includes more than $100 billion to improve aging highways, roads and bridges; another $39 billion for modernizing public transit, $25 billion to improve airports, $55 billion for clean drinking water and $65 billion to boost internet access.

Clyburn was joined by other Lowcountry representatives Tuesday to discuss other important projects under this new bill.

“Between 2017 and 2031, we’ll have about a 3-billion dollar capital plan in the port,” said Jim Newsome, president and CEO of the SC Ports. “Anything we can do to qualify, congressman, for that, would be very helpful. Also, the idea of getting reimbursed for our pending share of the harbor deepening in a timely passion would be very, very important as well.”

$16.6 billion is planned to be used for waterway and coastal infrastructure, which includes port infrastructure.

Clyburn shared that $366 million dollars will be used to improve public transportation and an additional $70 million to support the expansion of electric vehicle charging networks.

CARTA chairman, Mike Seekings, was also at Tuesday’s press conference.

“Public transit is integral to what we’re going to do in terms of economic development in this community,” Seekings said. “The port, the airport, and all the things that we do to move people around the state when they get here are just so wildly important.”

Clyburn says overall, he believes South Carolina is going to be in good shape as a result of this bill.

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