The Trump Administration on Monday released its long-awaited Legislative Outline for Rebuilding Infrastructure in America, which proposes at least $1.5 trillion in new investment across infrastructure asset classes; incentivizing greater state and local funding; shortening the project permitting process to two years; investing in rural projects; and improving worker training. (White House Fact Sheet, Feb. 12)
President Trump proposes that the government would spend $200 billion in infrastructure investment to spur states, localities and the private sector to raise the $1.3 trillion balance.
According to the Administration's proposal, states, localities and the private sector are asked to "step-up" their presence to catalyze a larger, modernized, and broader investment market. New federal funds would be allotted to boost existing federal infrastructure financing (like the TIFIA loan program for surface transportation) and expand federal financing platforms to reach airports, ports, short-line and passenger rail, rural broadband, stormwater, flood remediation and prevention, Brownfields remediation, and others.
Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao will appear before Senate and House infrastructure panels in early March to discuss the Administration's proposal. (Bloomberg Law, Feb. 13)
Since odds for passing a bill with additional spending this year are slim, serious consideration of a specific infrastructure bill is not expected until after the mid-term elections and a new Congress is sworn-in.
Roundtable President and CEO Jeffrey DeBoer commented on the positive economic benefits that such an infrastructure program would bring to the nation. "Modernizing our roads, tunnels, mass transit, drinking water, power grid, and telecommunications systems – in rural and urban areas alike – are vitally important to economic growth, productivity and America's global competitiveness," DeBoer said.
He added, "Real Estate Roundtable members are experienced in addressing the financing, permitting and government partnership issues that frequently slow or stop infrastructure projects. We intend to provide positive feedback and ideas to all policymakers working to facilitate improvements in our nation's infrastructure." (Roundtable Letter on Infrastructure Funding, Jan. 11)