The House Oversight and Reform Committee passed a markup of its allocated portion of the $3.5 trillion reconciliation package on September 2, directing $12 billion toward purchases of next-generation electric vehicles and related infrastructure for federal fleets.
The United States Postal Service will receive a majority of the funding—$7 billion for new delivery vehicles. The General Services Administration was allocated $5 billion to electrify and support other government vehicles, excluding tactical vehicles for the Department of Defense.
The committee draft initially called for $2.4 billion to electrify USPS vehicles, but the number ballooned to $7 billion after an amendment proposed by Rep. Stephen Lynch (D-MA) passed along party lines.
During a hearing in February, U.S. Postmaster Louis DeJoy reported that fully electric vehicles would only make up 10 percent of its upcoming fleet purchases, largely due to limited funding. However, DeJoy noted in a March letter that these preliminary plans could be altered, given sufficient funding. DeJoy estimated that approximately $8 billion would be required to electrify the entire new fleet. Even so, electric vehicles may not be feasible for up to 12,500 postal routes due to environmental or facility limitations or long distances.
Beyond electric vehicles, the committee passed an amendment proposed by Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-VA) to add $1 billion to the Technology Modernization Fund and $350 million to information technology oversight and reform at the Office of Management and Budget.
The Technology Modernization Fund was created in 2017 to provide IT upgrades to projects at federal agencies. A $1 billion infusion into the fund would be the second of its kind this year, after a previous $1 billion boost in the American Rescue Plan in March.
The recommendations in the markup now must clear a vote in the full House along with the rest of the reconciliation plan that is currently under development.