Trump reveals US$1 trillion infrastructure vision

By Thomas Allen05 June 2017

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In his latest budget request, President Trump followed through with one of his main campaign promises by putting forward his much-anticipated spending proposal that includes a new section intended to provide an infrastructure plan that would support US$1 trillion of private and public infrastructure investment.

The rebuilding plan would inject US$200 billion into transport projects over the next ten years, with the goal of creating US$1 trillion worth of overall investment.

According to the document, the administration would reach its spending target through a combination of new federal funding, incentives for private sector investment and expedited projects that supposedly would not have happened without the administration’s involvement.

The proposal is underpinned by four key approaches – leveraging private sector investment, ensuring federal dollars are targeted at transformative projects, shifting more services and underused capital assets to the private sector, and giving states and localities greater flexibility.

A fact sheet from the White House said the current environmental review and permitting process was “fragmented, inefficient and unpredictable”. As a result, the plan intends to eliminate or reform such regulations, which are believed to slow down projects.

Other proposals included in the infrastructure initiative include the expansion of the Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) program to US$1 billion every year, the reduction of tolling restrictions on existing interstate highways, the encouragement of programs that explore innovative ways to reduce traffic, and the lifting of a US$15 billion cap on Private Activity Bonds.

The White House also wants to create a mandatory revolving fund to help finance federally owned civilian capital assets and establish partnership grants for federal assets.

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