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Thiele boosts Biden legislation

The Island’s representative in the state Assembly is encouraging passage of the national Build Back Better bill currently in the hands of the Senate after passage by House members.

Fred Thiele Jr. (I-Sag Harbor) applauded the passage of the earlier infrastructure legislation he said would bring money to his district to take on long- neglected needs.

Turning his attention to the Build Back Better Act, Mr. Thiele said it would provide support for “a host of beneficial programs,” including expanded health care, lower prescription drug prices, more affordable child care and green energy initiatives to reduce consumer energy costs.

“The Build Back Better framework will help . . . rebuild our economy and make critical investments for our communities,” Mr. Thiele said. “I’m confident that the U.S. Senate will bring this important bill across the finish line and ensure this historic piece of legislation changes lives.”

Besides cutting costs of prescription drugs, passage of the Build Back Better bill would provide coverage for seniors for hearing aids. Through the Children’s Health Insurance Program, it would provide nearly 400,000 children with improved coverage and maternal healthcare.

An investment of $400 billion would provide universal pre-kindergarten for the youngest New Yorkers, affecting nearly 300,000 three- and four-year-olds.

It would enable parents to return to work, helping ensure quality, reliable and affordable childcare for the nearly one million young New Yorkers whose families stand to benefit from lowered childcare costs.

The bill would reduce poverty by enhancing the child tax credit for one year.

The bill also would bring the rest of the country closer to New York by introducing nationwide paid family leave, a crucial and long overdue program that’s been the law in this State since 2016.

The bill would invest $150 billion to construct and preserve affordable housing options, Mr. Thiele said. For the 1.7 million renters in New York, the Build Back Better Act would increase high-quality housing through new construction incentives and rehabilitation of existing housing units. It would add billions in new housing vouchers to support renters.

New Yorkers who have been negatively impacted by the state and local tax cap that blocks them from deducting the full amount paid for these taxes, would see corrections by increasing the cap from $10,000 to $80,000, Mr. Thiele said. New York communities would be able to raise more revenue, ensuring the ability to provide public services they have depended on, including emergency services, public health and infrastructure development.

Students and working families would benefit from increased opportunities to access higher education. The package would increase the maximum Pell Grant by $550, supporting the 340,512 students in New York who rely on Pell, while also expanding access to higher education for 28,000 so-called DREAMers. The designation comes from a bill in congress called the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act, which is an effort to grant legal status to certain undocumented immigrants who were brought to the United States as children and went to school here and who call New York home.

The Build Back Better legislation would provide more than $50 billion for training hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers in the jobs of tomorrow by investing in proven programs, including registered apprenticeships and other job training that prepare individuals for high quality jobs, Mr. Thiele said.

Money would help communities address climate change threats by investing $550 billion in emission-reducing technologies and expanding clean energy tax credits to spur private sector development, he said.

“From buildings to industry to transportation, these critical investments will help New York take significant steps towards meeting our ambitious climate mandates,” Mr. Thiele said.