President Trump rolls out $1.5 trillion infrastructure plan

President Donald Trump rolled out his infrastructure plan Monday, which envisions $1.5 trillion in spending over a decade to rebuild roads and highways. The plan relies heavily on state and local government budgets to become a reality.


The proposal calls for $1.5 trillion in new spending to repair the nation's infrastructure, but just $200 billion of that would come from new federal spending.

Most of the spending will come from state and local governments, which are expected to match any federal allocation by at least a four-to-one ratio. States have gradually assumed more of the responsibility for funding infrastructure in recent years, and the White House says it wants to accelerate that trend.

“Every federal dollar should be leveraged by partnering with state and local governments and — where appropriate — tapping into private sector investment to permanently fix the infrastructure deficit,” Trump said at last month’s State of the Union address.

Trump has repeatedly blamed the “crumbling” state of the nation’s roads and highways for preventing the American economy from reaching its full potential. Many in Washington believe that Trump should have begun his term a year ago with an infrastructure push, one that could have garnered bipartisan support or, at minimum, placed Democrats in a bind for opposing a popular political measure.

Administration officials previewing the plan said it would feature two key components: an injection of funding for new investments and to help speed up repairs of crumbling roads and airports, as well as a streamlined permitting process that would truncate the wait time to get projects underway.

"What we really want to do is provide opportunities for state and local governments to receive federal funding when they're doing what's politically hard, and increasing investment in infrastructure," DJ Gribbin, Trump's special assistant for infrastructure, said to the United States Conference of Mayors last month.

However, the administration said that existing funding sources — such as sales taxes that have already been levied to pay for transit projects — may count towards a local jurisdiction's contribution.

"There will be a lookback provision so that states and local governments who have already recently raised revenues aren't penalized for being forward thinking and implementing the types of policies that we're encouraging through this program," a senior administration said.

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