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News » US » Trump unveils infrastructure initiative » published 13 Feb 2018

Trump unveils infrastructure initiative

President Donald Trump has unveiled his infrastructure initiative, Building a Stronger America.

“We will build gleaming new roads, bridges, highways, railways, and waterways all across our land,” he said. “And we will do it with American heart, and American hands, and American grit.”

Details for Congress are set out in a 55-page document, Legislative Outline for Rebuilding Infrastructure in America.

Trump said that the nation’s infrastructure is in an unacceptable state of disrepair, damaging competitiveness and citizens’ quality of life. He added: “To help build a better future for all Americans, I ask the Congress to act soon on an infrastructure bill that will:  stimulate at least $1.5 trillion in new investment over the next 10 years, shorten the process for approving projects to 2 years or less, address unmet rural infrastructure needs, empower State and local authorities, and train the American workforce of the future.”

His legislative goals are centered around six principles:

US$200bn in federal funds designed to spur at least US$1.5 trillion in infrastructure investments with partners at the state, local, Tribal and private level;

new investments in rural America;

the return of decision-making authority to state and local governments;

the removal of regulatory barriers that he says needlessly get in the way of infrastructure projects;

streamlined and shortening of the permit process for infrastructure projects;

supporting and strengthening of America’s workforce.

Of the US$200bn, US$100bn will be for the creation of an incentives program to spur additional dedicated funds from states, localities and the private sector. Applications for the program will be evaluated on objective criteria, with creating additional infrastructure investment being the largest factor.

A sum of US$20bn will be dedicated to the Transformative Projects Program, which will provide federal aid “for bold and innovative projects that have the potential to dramatically improve America’s infrastructure.” The program will focus on projects that could have a significant positive impact on states, cities, and localities but may not attract private sector investment because of the project’s characteristics.

There will be US$20bn for expanding infrastructure financing programs. Of the $20 billion, $14 billion will go to expanding a number of existing credit programs: TIFIA, WIFIA, RRIF and rural utility lending. Expansion of Private Activity Bonds will receive US$6bn.

A sum of US$10bn will go to a new Federal Capital Revolving Fund, designed to reduce inefficient leasing of federal real property that would be more cost-effective to purchase.



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This article was published on 13 Feb 2018 (last updated on 13 Feb 2018).

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