With the midterm elections completed and the Congressional lame duck session underway, Americans are looking for a fresh approach to infrastructure investment at the federal level. ASCE hopes that the new Congress will respond to our nation’s infrastructure needs with compromise and urgency before May, when the Highway Trust Fund will once again become insolvent.
In order to make progress in revitalizing infrastructure, bipartisan compromise between the White House and Congress is necessary.
ASCE Senior Managing Director, Casey Dinges, told Wired that there are reasons to be optimistic that the new Congress will address infrastructure spending. Among these are the decrease in gas prices, lack of recent productivity and existing Congressional support for funding infrastructure. According to Dinges, even the conservative US Chamber of Commerce supports raising the gas tax as a “smart, fair and achievable way” to meet funding needs.
Representative John Delaney is hopeful for bipartisan support when it comes to improving our infrastructure.
In The Hill, Delaney points to the Partnership to Build America Act (PBAA), which has support from Republicans and Democrats, as an innovative financing tool to create a large-scale infrastructure fund that is funded by selling infrastructure bonds to private companies, rather than increasing taxes or additional spending. Congressman Delaney noted that the PBAA would be a solid step towards infrastructure improvement that “brings together good ideas from both sides of the aisle.”
Bipartisanship, compromise and collaboration are key if we are going to address our nation’s infrastructure needs and #FixtheTrustFund.