Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Major Trump Shift on Infrastructure: May Support Trillion Dollar Public Funding

President Donald Trump told a bipartisan group of lawmakers Tuesday that he didn’t favor public-private partnerships to finance public works anymore, casting doubt on a central pillar of his administration’s infrastructure building plans, reports The Wall Street Journal.

Speaking to members of the House Ways and Means Committee about his plans to change the tax code, Trump said such partnerships, in which
private investors help fund the construction or operation of roads and bridges in exchange for a share of future revenues, are “more trouble than they’re worth,” said Rep. Brian Higgins (D., N.Y.). Another attendee, Richard Neal (D., Mass.), gave a similar account.

WSJ notes:
Mr. Trump’s doubts could present an opening for Democrats, including Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York, who have criticized talk of using fees and tolls to fund an infrastructure building plan, but said they would work with the administration if it agrees to fund federal investments in infrastructure through direct spending.
Public-private partnerships are very bad crony deals but all direct government spending deals are worse.


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