WASHINGTON – The Campaign for America’s Future today cheered the introduction of the “National Infrastructure Development Bank Act of 2009,” by Reps. Keith Ellison, D-Minn., and Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn. This legislation would create a development bank to finance infrastructure projects in the realm of transportation, the environment, energy and telecommunications. Through federal funding and private investment, a national infrastructure development bank would offer urgently needed financial support to local and state governments, and address our nation’s investment deficit.
CO-DIRECTOR, CAMPAIGN FOR AMERICA’S FUTURE
This legislation will make an important contribution to addressing America’s investment deficit. We have always been a nation that has looked to the future by investing in our land and in our people. Historically, we directed roughly 8 percent of our gross domestic product to long-term investments, and that investment paid off. Public investment built the interstate highway system and transcontinental railroad, universal primary education and public universities, and much more.
But since then, we have adopted a short-term “pay-as-you-go” mentality that stops long range investment before it begins. Nowadays, public investment as a percentage of GDP has dropped below 4 percent. Our post-World War II infrastructure is decaying and we aren’t replacing it. Levees are overflowing, water mains are bursting and our roads are potholed. Instead of building for the future, we sit in traffic and worry about budget deficits a decade from now.
The National Infrastructure Investment Act would help address these problems by creating an instrument that can help finance long-range investments with public and private capital. . Infrastructure investments can create jobs in the short term and economic growth in the long term, addressing both our current investment deficit and next decade’s budget deficit at the same time. This bill supports long-term growth that will keep America competitive globally and improve our way of life.