Chairman Beyer on FY2022 Budget: Empirics Should Outweigh Hypotheticals

“The physical and human infrastructure investments that the Biden Administration wants to make are the right investments at the right time, and we have the spending capacity to make them.”

May 13 2021

On Friday, May 7, in a letter to House Budget Committee Chairman John Yarmuth, Congressman Don Beyer (D-VA), Chairman of the U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee (JEC), made the case for why the FY2022 budget should make investments in physical and human infrastructure despite warnings from deficit hawks that the United States doesn’t have the spending capacity to do so.
Today, the U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee (JEC)—led by Chairman Don Beyer (D-VA)—will hold a remote hearing titled “Examining the Racial Wealth Gap in the United States,” which explores how decades of federal policy—slavery, the Homestead Act, redlining, the Federal Aid Highway Act, exclusionary zoning, among others—created the racial wealth gap and why action is needed to improve access to wealth and capital.
The United States invests less in infrastructure than its peers and substantially less than it used to. As result, the nation’s physical infrastructure is in a state of disrepair—and also “dangerously overstretched”—with a funding gap of $2 trillion. This hurts American workers and businesses, and the United States’ ability to compete globally—a reality that the pandemic made even more clear.

Today, ahead of President Biden’s meetings this week with Democrats and Republicans on infrastructure, the U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee (JEC)—led by Chairman Don Beyer (D-VA)—released a report that explores why big, bold investments in the United States’ physical and human infrastructure are important for future economic growth.

Today, Congressman Don Beyer (D-VA), Chairman of the U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee (JEC), released the following statement after the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that nonfarm payroll employment increased by 266,000 in April and the unemployment rate was 6.1%. The unemployment rate was 9.7% for Black workers and 7.9% for Hispanic workers.

“Today’s unexpected jobs numbers underscore the uncertainty that still exists as a result of the economic damage caused by the pandemic. Progress is being made, but it is clear that we have a long way to go before our economy is back on solid ground.

“While the American Rescue Plan provided much needed emergency relief for the American people, big, bold action is required to recover the 8.2 million jobs we are still down since the beginning of the pandemic and ensure sustained economic growth. President Biden’s American Jobs Plan and American Families Plan, and their once-in-a-century investments in physical and human infrastructure, represent this type of big, bold action. 

“Ten million Americans are still looking for work, and many of them have been since the beginning of the pandemic. In addition, the unemployment rate rose last month, and unemployment in general remains much higher than it was before the pandemic—especially for Black and Latino workers. This is why it is more important than ever to reform our nation’s unemployment insurance system—with benefits tied to economic conditions—so those who are trying to pay their rent and put food on the table get unemployment insurance when they need it and for as long as they need it.”

Today, Congressman Don Beyer (D-VA), Chairman of the U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee (JEC), released the following statement after the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) reported its initial estimate of first quarter gross domestic product (GDP), showing that real GDP grew at an annual rate of 6.4%.
Today, the U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee (JEC) welcomed its new Executive Director Tamara L. Fucile. Fucile brings over two decades of policy, budget and management experience to the role.

Prior to joining the JEC, Fucile was a Senior Counselor at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities where she led the Center’s federal policy work, including its work to shape policies and programs in response to the economic impact of the coronavirus.
Today, the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC), led by Congressman Raul Ruiz, M.D. (D-CA), and the U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee (JEC), led by Congressman Don Beyer (D-VA), released a new report that explores why immigrants are vital to the U.S. economy—both now (i.e. economic recovery) and in the future (i.e. economic growth)—despite being among the hardest hit by the health and economic effects of the coronavirus.