February 14, 2018. President Trump outlined his long-promised and long-awaited infrastructure plan Monday. Billed as a $1.5 trillion plan, it only includes $200 billion in federal money, leaving state and local governments largely on the hook for the rest of the money.
The plan says the $200 billion in federal money — which would come from cuts made elsewhere — will spur as much as $1.5 trillion to $1.7 trillion in development over the next 10 years. President Trump indicated the massive plan to replace the nation’s “crumbling infrastructure” didn’t matter as much as tax reforms or a boost to the Pentagon’s budget.
Some local leaders are concerned Uncle Sam isn’t coughing up enough, however, to fund highways, water systems and other public works. Democrats blasted the infrastructure funding structure and a proposal to streamline permit applications.
Ron Deutsch of the liberal-leaning Fiscal Policy Institute panned the plan, which encourages private companies building public works.
“This is a President that would like to privatize a lot of different services around the country,” he told the Daily News. “That’s misguided and short-sighted.”
Adding more infrastructure spending could put more pressure on state budgets — including in New York. Suggestions that tax increases or bond issuances would pay for the work could only make matters worse.
“I’m very concerned about the way this is taking shape at this point,” Ron said.
The plan also leaves the future of the proposed multi billion-dollar Gateway Tunnel between New York and New Jersey in question.
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