BURLINGTON, VT – Today, Senator Peter Welch (D-VT) commemorated the one-year anniversary of the enactment of the Inflation Reduction Act, a transformative climate and economic legislative package that has lowered costs for working families, created jobs, and spurred the green energy transition in Vermont and in communities across the United States.
“The passage of the Inflation Reduction Act was a win for Vermont families, our economy, and the green energy future–and one year later it’s clear this law is delivering on its promises for our communities. We worked closely with the Biden Administration to include key Vermont priorities in this bill–including provisions to lower the cost of prescription drugs, expand access to home energy upgrades, and tackle climate change. And importantly, it will create good-paying jobs right here in Vermont,” said Sen. Welch. “Making sure this law–and the transformative programs within it–get implemented quickly and fairly will be key. No person, and no community, should be left out.”
The Inflation Reduction Act included key policies Senator Welch championed as a member of the House of Representatives, including legislation to:
- Lower the Costs of Prescription Drugs and Empower Medicare to Negotiate Drug Prices: Under the Inflation Reduction Act, Medicare has–for the first time in history–been empowered to negotiate with pharmaceutical manufacturers for lower prices for many lifesaving drugs. These provisions will save taxpayers an estimated $288 billion over the next decade, according to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, and could soon lower the cost of other prescription drugs.
- Expand Access to Home Energy Efficiency Upgrades and Cut Energy Costs and Emissions: Senator Welch’s HOPE for HOMES Act, bipartisan legislation to make home energy efficiency upgrades more accessible, was also included as part of the Inflation Reduction Act. The $4.3 billion Home Efficiency Rebate program will help homeowners retrofit their homes with energy efficient improvements including insulation, HVAC systems, and air source or ground source heat pumps–in-turn lowering energy costs for Americans, reducing our greenhouse gas emissions, and investing in the energy workforce. This program is currently being implemented by state energy departments, and will soon be available to homeowners.
- Extend Tax Credits to Make Buying an Electric Vehicle More Affordable, and Slash Pollution: Senator Welch’s Electric Cars Act, bicameral legislation to extend the electric vehicle tax credit for 10 years, was also included in the Inflation Reduction Act. This bill also eliminates the per manufacturer cap and incentivizes build out of EV charging infrastructure.
The Inflation Reduction Act will bring an estimated $170 million of investment in clean power to Vermont through 2030, and provide the state’s communities, families and businesses with historic tax credits that will create jobs in clean energy industries like solar, wind, and geothermal, and efficiency. The bill will support our local economies by creating jobs, boosting U.S. manufacturing, and slashing costs for small businesses. It will lower the costs of prescription drugs for seniors, expand health care coverage for millions of Americans living in rural communities, and cap the prices of many life-saving and essential drugs. In total, the Center for American Progress credits the Inflation Reduction Act with 272 newly announced clean energy projects and estimates the bill has created over 170,000 jobs.
The Inflation Reduction Act was signed into law on August 16, 2022.