CBO Report on Public Spending and Water Infrastructure

Published Report

In fiscal year 2007—the most recent year for which data on combined spending by the federal government and by state and local governments are available—total public spending for transportation and water infrastructure was $356 billion, or 2.4 percent of the nation’s economic output as measured by its gross domestic product. For the purposes of this study, transportation and water infrastructure encompasses infrastructure for all forms of surface transportation (highways, mass transit, rail, and waterways), aviation, water resources (such as dams and levees), and water distribution and wastewater treatment.

Recent Developments in Public Spending for Transportation and Water Infrastructure

Between 2003 and 2007, real (inflation-adjusted) public spending on transportation and water infrastructure declined by $23 billion, or 6 percent. That decline, which reflects a decrease in real capital spending, especially by the federal government, stands in contrast to the fairly steady increase in spending for such infrastructure during the previous two decades. In particular, real capital spending on highways, mass transit, and aviation fell markedly even as capital spending on other types of infrastructure— such as rail and water transportation, water resources, and water supply and wastewater treatment-remained stable or rose. The drop in real capital spending for highways, mass transit, and aviation between 2003 and 2007 was primarily the result of a sharp increase in prices for materials used to build such infrastructure—an increase that outpaced the growth of nominal (currentdollar) spending on those types of infrastructure.

Governor Rendell Testifies Before Congress

Published Report


Good morning and thank you Chairman Dodd and Senator Shelby for welcoming me to the
Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee. Given the President’s recent infrastructure investment announcements, and the interest from people across America, I am very grateful to be here to testify about the need to create a National Infrastructure Bank to help finance critical investments in our nation’s crumbling infrastructure.

Building America’s Future

What They Are Saying: National Infrastructure Bank is Needed to Repair and Modernize America’s Infrastructure

Published Report

The time for action is now - America’s infrastructure is crumbling and urgently needs to be repaired and modernized.

Building America’s Future Letter to Congress

Published Report

Dear Senator Reid, Senator McConnell, Madam Speaker and Mr. Boehner,

Building America's Future Report on the National Infrastructure Bank

Published Report

National Infrastructure Bank

American Recovery and Reinvestment Act

Published Report

Congress passed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 at the urging of President Obama, who signed it into law four days later. A direct response to the economic crisis, the Recovery Act has three immediate goals:

Create new jobs and save existing one Spur economic activity and invest in long-term grow Foster unprecedented levels of accountability and transparency in government spending

The Recovery Act intends to achieve those goals by:

State of Metropolitan America

Published Report

The State of Metropolitan America is a signature effort of the brookings Metropolitan policy program that portrays the demographic and social trends shaping the nation’s essential economic and societal units—its large metropolitan areas—and discusses what they imply for public policies to secure prosperity for these places and their populations.

An Economic Analysis of Infrastructure Investment

Published Report

On Labor Day, President Obama announced a bold plan to renew and expand America’s infrastructure. The plan includes a $50 billion up-front investment connected to a six-year reauthorization of the surface transportation program and the creation of a National Infrastructure Bank to leverage private capital and select projects of regional and national significance. The Department of the Treasury, with the Council of Economic Advisers, has conducted an analysis of the economic effects of transportation infrastructure investment.

CRS Report on Job Loss and Infrastructure Job Creation Spending During the Recession

Published Report

After the long economic expansion that characterized much of the current decade, the nation entered its 11th postwar recession in December 2007. The subsequent decrease in jobs and comparison of the latest recession to the Great Depression intensified congressional interest in passing legislation early in 2009 aimed at encouraging creation of new jobs and warding off further loss of jobs.

A Bridge to Somewhere: Rethinking American Transportation for the 21st Century

Published Report

In the past, strategic investments in our nation’s transportation infrastructure—the railroads in the 19th century, the interstates in the 20th—turbocharged growth and transformed the country. But more recently, America’s transportation infrastructure has not kept pace with the growth and evolution of its economy. At the precise time when the nation desperately needs to prioritize its limited investments and resources, the federal transportation program has lost focus.