IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES
April 20, 2021
Ms. Baldwin (for herself and Mr. Braun) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Environment and Public Works
To require the Secretary of Transportation to develop best practices for incorporating resilience into emergency relief projects, and for other purposes.
This Act may be cited as the
Rebuilding Stronger Infrastructure Act.
Emergency relief program
In this Act:
Emergency relief project
The term emergency relief project means a project carried out under the emergency relief program under section 125 of title 23, United States Code.
The term resilience means, with respect to a facility, the ability—
to anticipate, prepare for, or adapt to conditions; or
to withstand, respond to, or recover rapidly from disruptions.
The term resilience includes, with respect to a facility, the ability—
to resist hazards or withstand impacts from disruptions;
to reduce the magnitude, duration, or impact of a disruption; or
to have the absorptive capacity, adaptive capacity, and recoverability to decrease vulnerability to a disruption.
The term Secretary means the Secretary of Transportation.
Improving the emergency relief program
Not later than 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall—
revise the emergency relief manual of the Federal Highway Administration—
to include and reflect the definition of the term resilience;
to identify procedures that States may use to incorporate resilience into emergency relief projects; and
to encourage the use of Complete Streets design principles and consideration of access for moderate- and low-income families impacted by a declared disaster;
develop best practices for improving the use of resilience in—
the emergency relief program under section 125 of title 23, United States Code; and
emergency relief efforts;
provide to division offices of the Federal Highway Administration and State departments of transportation information on the best practices developed under paragraph (2); and
develop and implement a process to track—
the consideration of resilience as part of the emergency relief program under section 125 of title 23, United States Code; and
the costs of emergency relief projects.
Section 125(d) of title 23, United States Code, is amended by striking paragraph (2) and inserting the following:
The total cost of a project funded under this section may not exceed the cost of repair or reconstruction of a comparable facility unless the Secretary determines that the project incorporates economically justified betterments, including protective features to increase the resilience of the facility.