Trump and Infrastructure: TIFIA On Steroids

The Trump plan would supercharge Private Activity Bonds (PAB) as a P3 financing tool, expand PABs and the Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA), include airports and inland waterways and ports, and increase funding for TIFIA and the other the major federal credit programs that support freight, roads, rail, and water projects.

The “leveraging math” in these programs (5-to-1 with 20% grants for “core” projects and 40-to-1 with TIFIA/WIFIA/RIFF loans scored at pennies on the dollar) points to a large number, as much as $13 billion in loans a year. That level of federal gap financing could support up to $50 billion a year in state and local projects.

Private finance and P3s have been a small part of these federal credit programs. So the majority of the induced spending would be for public projects funded with state and local taxes and fees to pay the local match, and eventually to repay the federal loan.

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About Bill Reinhardt

Editor of Public Works Financing newsletter
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