WASHINGTON, DC (12/20/11) – U.S. Rep. Ed Whitfield (R-KY-01), along with Rep. Leonard Boswell (D-IA-03) today introduced bipartisan legislation that would inject significant investment into our nation’s ailing transportation infrastructure. Transportation and Regional Infrastructure Project bonds or TRIPs represent an efficient and effective means of creating jobs and keeping our economy moving. This legislation mirrors a proposal introduced earlier this year by Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Senator John Hoeven (R-ND) that creates a tax credit bond program dedicated to transportation infrastructure.
“With millions of Americans still out of work and our infrastructure crumbling, TRIPs represent an opportunity to tackle both of these problems head-on, in a fiscally responsible manner,” said Whitfield. “By leveraging private sector dollars, we can create jobs and make the infrastructure investments needed to stay economically competitive now and in the future. I look forward to working with my colleagues in a bipartisan, bicameral fashion to advance this legislation as part of a long-term surface transportation reauthorization.”
“This bipartisan legislation would give cities and states the mechanism they need to jumpstart major infrastructure projects across all modes of transportation, and make must-needed repairs to our roads and bridges, while also creating jobs and adding to the recovery of our economy” said Boswell.
BACKGROUND: The legislation will allow State Infrastructure Banks to issue $50 billion in bonds over a six year period with the principal cost of the bonds being covered by a trust fund composed of Customs User Fees. Bondholders will receive a tax credit instead of interest or the tax-exemption found in municipal bonds – making the bonds fairer to the taxpayers and ensuring that the bonds do not become tax havens. The proceeds of the bonds will be used to fund the construction of projects across all modes of transportation including roads, bridges, transit, rail, and waterways. Each state infrastructure bank will be authorized to issue $1 billion over six years for projects in their state, and they may combine to work together on larger projects of regional and national significance.
Information submitted by the Offices of Congressman Ed Whitfield
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