TO THE EDITOR: President Joe Biden recently announced a $2 trillion infrastructure bill, which, according to CNBC includes $621 billion for transportation infrastructure, $580 billion invested in American manufacturing, research, and development, and job training efforts, $400 billion in elderly and disability care, $300 billion towards improving drinking water, Internet, and electricity infrastructure, and an additional $300 billion for affordable housing and schools.

This bill should be considered a slap in the face to all Americans, and here’s why.

Despite being the richest nation in the world, the United States ranks 12th in infrastructure, according to the World Economic Forum. Sixty-five percent of all major U.S. roads are rated as “less than good condition” according to the U.S. Department of Transportation. Driving on poor condition roads has costs U.S. motorists $131 billion annually through vehicle repairs and operating costs.

Additionally, congested highway networks have cost U.S. companies $74.5 billion annually pre-COVID-19, according to the American Transport Research Institute. However, fixing our infrastructure is no small task, as the American Society of Civil Engineers estimates simply fixing our infrastructure back to adequate levels would require $4.6 trillion.

I suggest Joe Biden pass Senator Bernie Sander’s proposed $16 trillion infrastructure plan that would revitalize the American economy and would get Americans working again. This bill would include building a renewable energy sector large enough to support the nation in a transition away from fossil fuels, a low-cost public transit sector that would connect rural Americans to the job opportunities in urban areas, and would develop a regionalized high-speed rail network, which would connect the economies of East Coast with the Midwest and the West Coast.

This plan would create 20 million jobs, allowing those who lost their job due to COVID-19 to get a protected good-paying job.




TO THE EDITOR: The Excelsior Pass touted in a coronavirus update from Gov. Cuomo (March 31) and mentioned in the New York Times on April 4, "Here’s what you need to know about your vaccine card," is all fluff.

We both went through the on-line form multiple times but it did not allow us to select the correct date of our second vaccination and the pass was denied.

The helpline, 844-699-7277, is not helpful. The person answering told us to fill out the form again using an app, which, predictably, gave the same negative result. We also responded to a feedback and support section of the app complaining of our inability to obtain Excelsior Passes and were advised to use our vaccination cards since we couldn’t get the passes.

New York state should either fix the Excelsior Pass system or remove it. No more bull, please.





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