In case you missed it, Sen. Chuck Schumer’s plan to spend $1 trillion on infrastructure over the next 10 years has a very important local component — the construction of that long-awaited third lane up Route 17 all the way to the Catskills.

At this point, the new lane and all the rest are just suggestions since the Democrats need to work with Republicans in the Senate and then get the House to go along. But this is an election year, a traditional time for Congress to spend, and President Trump has long said he is in favor of spending on our aging roads, bridges, sewer and water lines.

Schumer pitched his plan to New Yorkers and especially those away from the metropolitan area, repeating familiar warnings about how many bridges in the state are aging and that the average family in the Albany area with two vehicles spends about $1,000 a year for damage caused by failing infrastructure. Add the promise of more high-speed internet access as part of the plan and it is hard to see how any New Yorker could object.

But that was not the most exciting infrastructure news this week. Assemblyman James Skoufis, D-Woodbury, is the chief co-sponsor of a bill to create a commission that will look into developing high speed rail in the state.

We’re a long way from checking fares and schedules, but just the idea that New York legislators are looking at the future of mass transit and seeing a role for it in upstate New York is refreshing. It’s also a welcome reminder to Andrew Cuomo who is running for re-election as governor and might be running for president that once upon a time, he, too, was hot on this idea.

"High speed rail could be transformative for New York — with the potential to revitalize Upstate New York’s economy with construction jobs now and permanent jobs created by the new high speed rail links to New York City, Toronto and Montreal in the future.”

That was the newly elected governor in the fall of 2010 trying to sell the idea and get support from the Obama administration’s Department of Transportation. He has not said much lately so perhaps the newfound legislative interest will remind him.

All of these projects also come with the obligation to figure out how to pay the price, something that is likely to create an impasse or two in both Albany and Washington. But having recently decided that a $1 trillion or so increase in federal debt was acceptable if it created a lot of tax breaks, it will be interesting to see how Congress deals with the prospect of adding yet another $1 trillion in red ink.

Will Republicans continue to run away from their former deficit hawk position, especially if this can both buy votes and create jobs? Or will they decide that they already have gone as far as they can?

Whatever happens on that score, it is important that our congressional delegation make sure that Route 17 construction remains a top priority and that our legislative delegation supports planning for high speed rail.