Private Funding Is Key Challenge of Trump Infrastructure Plan

Effort reflects the difficulty of coming up with taxpayer dollars in era of constrained budgeting; administration has released few details

 President Donald Trump’s proposed infusion of funding for infrastructure turns on a critical question: how the administration will get private investors to put up most of the money.
.. Mr. Trump’s advisers say they can get private investors to flock to put up the capital for such projects by curtailing permitting requirements and regulations, and by offering incentives to states and cities to turn to the private sector for financing.
.. it plans to encourage cities and towns to raise fees—like roadway tolls or water-usage charges—that will provide the revenue streams for private-equity investors.
.. The municipal bond market remains a more attractive source of funding to many state and local officials needing funding for major projects, Ms. Crebo-Rediker said, and many local governments lack expertise in how to structure public-private partnership deals.
..finding money for projects isn’t the problem; it is the dearth of attractive investments.
.. Blackstone Group LP last month disclosed that Saudi Arabia has agreed to invest $20 billion in an infrastructure fund that the New York firm hopes will reach $40 billion and have spending power of as much as $100 billion once debt is added.
.. while the administration says it will devote $200 billion more to infrastructure over the coming 10 years, the department is also cutting funding to existing programs that support major projects.