Proposed bill leans on corporations for infrastructure funds

By |  May 27, 2013

A unique form of infrastructure funding was introduced last week when Rep. John K. Delaney (D-Md.) crafted The Partnership to Build America Act, which would create a $50 billion fund that makes bonds available for purchase to global corporations based in the United States.

According to The Gazette of Gaithersburg, Md., for every $1 corporations invest in bonds, they would be allowed to repatriate a certain dollar amount in their overseas earnings tax-free. Subsequently, the fund would provide loans to local governments for infrastructure projects built through public-private partnerships.

No taxpayer money would be involved, and the government would not guarantee bonds. The bill is being co-sponsored by a bipartisan group of 13 Republicans and 13 Democrats.

“Folks in Washington love to talk big on transportation issues, but this bill represents a truly outside-the-box solution that will generate results and address our nation’s crumbling infrastructure,” Rep. Rodney Flach (R-Ill.) told The Gazette.

Furthermore, the bill would establish the American Infrastructure Fund, a non-government entity that would have its own board of trustees, which would issue $50 billion of infrastructure bonds to corporations. Bonds would have a 50-year term and a fixed interest rate of 1 percent.

According to research firm Audit Analytics, U.S. corporations had overseas earnings of $1.9 trillion in 2012.

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Kevin Yanik is editor-in-chief of Pit & Quarry. He can be reached at 216-706-3724 or

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