CG/LA Infrastructure's InfraBlog

Bill promotes public-private partnerships

MississippiriverBy JOANIE STIERS
The Register-Mail
Posted Mar 30, 2013 @ 07:00 AM

GALESBURG — Proposed legislation would use public-private partnership to improve the nation’s water infrastructure.

U.S. Rep. Cheri Bustos, D-East Moline, was among a bipartisan effort of four U.S. senators and representatives from Illinois to introduce the Water Infrastructure Now Public-Private Partnership Act. The legislation boasts the ability to expedite water infrastructure projects and save taxpayers money. Improvements to the locks and dams along the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers would be included.

The act would create a pilot program to explore agreements between the Army Corps of Engineers and private entities. The Army Corps of Engineers estimates a $60 billion backlog of outstanding projects that will take decades to complete without outside investment. The five-year pilot program would identify up to 15 previously authorized projects for participation.

“By encouraging public-private partnerships, our bipartisan bill will expedite the planning and construction of projects that will make the movement of the high-quality goods of our region — whether they be from Caterpillar, John Deere or the numerous farmers and manufacturers that call Illinois home — more swift, efficient and safe,” Bustos stated in a news release.

To ensure accountability and transparency, the legislation would require an audit of activities by the private entities. It does not allow privatization of any federal asset.


Taken from Galesburg:


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