Does America need a national infrastructure fund?
February 8, 2008
Senators Chris Dodd and Chuck Hagel have proposed creating a national infrastructure bank
in order to help upgrade the civil infrastructure of the United States -- including stormwater
and flood controls, dams, water treatment
plants and wastewater
plants. Senator Hagel's interest in the matter makes lots of sense: Nebraska's low population density means that it's growing ever more difficult to fund necessary improvements to municipal infrastructure at precisely the same time as the need for better civil works grows due to environmental pressures. Meanwhile, the President's new budget dramatically reduces funding for Community Development Block Grants
, which have been widely used for funding water and wastewater improvements in rural Iowa and Nebraska. The proposed budget also includes no funding for the Lewis and Clark project
to bring rural water service to parts of Iowa, Minnesota, and South Dakota. The Lewis and Clark project is now three years behind schedule
, and the loss of funding will certainly set it back even more.
last revised February 2008