JOLIET, Ill. — In a rare bipartisan vote, last fall Congress passed massive spending for American infrastructure. Now it’s time for states and local governments to see the money.

With $1.2 trillion to hand out, U.S. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg is touring America.

Wednesday’s stop was Joliet, Illinois where Governor J.B. Pritzker, Congressman Bill Foster and other local officials cut the ribbon on the new Joliet Gateway Center Bus Station.

Across America, billions have been doled out.

“We’ve already seen over $70 billion made available – a lot of that is for the highway, road, bridges, and related funding,” Buttigieg said. “We’re going to be making announcements just about every week.”

Under President Biden’s infrastructure law, Illinois is expected to receive roughly $15 billion over the next five years:

  • $11.3 billion for roads and bridges
  • $4.5 billion for public transportation improvements
  • $616 million to improve airport infrastructure
  • $149 million for EV chargers.

“We know that Illinois has a lot of need. This is an area that very much grew up on infrastructure. Whether we’re talking about the Great Lakes, whether we’re talking about airports that have made this region into a global economic force, whether we’re talking about roads and bridges,” Buttigieg said. “But Illinois is in an unusually good position because the state has already acted to provide funding at the state level to upgrade infrastructure.”

Pritzker, in reelection mode, is highlighting spending under his $45 billion Rebuild Illinois program. Roughly $6 billion has already gone out including $20 million into an overhaul of the 147th Street Sibley Metra Station in Harvey.

“New entrances, a new parking lot, bicycle storage, a new warming shelter, a new cover for when it rains,” Pritzker said.

Rebuilding America’s infrastructure is one of the rare issues uniting Democrats and Republicans. Buttigieg calls it the work of America’s younger generation.

“You have to make the choice to invest. That’s why the bipartisan infrastructure law is so important,” he said. “The sooner we can put these dollars to get efficient work, the better. But we’ve to get it right.”

Buttigieg said we can expect to see him back in Illinois, Wisconsin and Indiana throughout the year.