BRIDGE Act aims to spur infrastructure investment

Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), along with a bipartisan group of nine other senators, introduced the Building and Renewing Infrastructure for Development and Growth in Employment Act on Thursday to address shortfalls in infrastructure investment across the country.

The BRIDGE Act would establish financing tools for state and local governments that are able to create jobs while investing in transportation networks, water and waste water systems and energy infrastructure projects.

“Infrastructure has long been an integral part of our economy,” Blunt said. “Successful transportation systems connect people and communities; and businesses large and small, and the jobs they create, rely on a strong infrastructure network to connect with their customers.”

The bipartisan bill would establish a new financing authority to support infrastructure improvement projects that create jobs and grow the economy to ensure “America’s global competitiveness in the 21st century,” Blunt said.

Approximately two percent of America’s gross domestic product is spent on infrastructure, which is approximately half the amount spent 50 year ago.

The BRIDGE Act would help address the shortfall by creating an independent, nonpartisan financing authority to supplement existing infrastructure investment.

The financing authority would provide loans and loan guarantees to help fund road, bridge, rail, port, water, sewer and other projects.

Initially, the financing authority would receive $10 billion in funding to incentivize private sector investment that could lead to $300 billion in total investments.