The Performance Infrastructure Review Committee (PIRC) is a bipartisan committee of individuals with expertise in federal policy, infrastructure development, and project finance. Over the past six months, PIRC has reviewed numerous concepts pertaining to how infrastructure is financed. The objective has been to develop a shortlist of those options that seem to have the greatest promise in terms of political practicality, budget affordability, and investment.
PIRC has favored financing proposals that build upon prior experience. In evaluating different policy options, PIRC used the “three-legged stool” theory of design: Each financing tool must meet the differing needs of the Borrower (offering lower cost or other advantages), the Investor (providing a competitive risk-adjusted rate of return), and the Federal policy maker (having a manageable, scored budgetary cost and adhering to fundamental public policies). If any one of the stool’s three legs is “wobbly” the approach will not be effective.
Thus far, PIRC has identified five new infrastructure investment policy tools that it believes could be of particular value in the current debate over how to boost spending: