Invitation: Help WikiTribune report on infrastructure needs in your state and city


Donald J. Trump’s long-awaited infrastructure plan will release $200 billion in federal funds for building projects across the United States. So what are most critical infrastructure needs in your area?

Decaying bridges? Inadequate railways? Outdated airports? Deteriorating roadways?

Try reporting on them for WikiTribune using the below link or scroll down to see potential questions to consider.

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Background

Promising to “build gleaming new roads, bridges, highways, railways, and waterways all across our land,” the White House released Trump’s American Infrastructure Initiative on Monday.

Rebuilding what he called America’s “crumbling” infrastructure (ABC) was a major theme of candidate Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign and post-election rhetoric.

The plan is built around six principles: $200 billion in federal funds; new investments in rural America; decision-making authority returned to state and local governments; removal of regulatory barriers; streamlined permitting for infrastructure projects; and support for America’s workforce.

The White House said the $200 billion federal expenditure will spur a further $1.5 trillion in infrastructure investment from various sources, including the private sector.

It said the initiative has “the potential to dramatically improve America’s infrastructure” by focusing “on projects that could have a significant positive impact on states, cities, and localities.”

Competition for funds

According to the Legislative Outline for Rebuilding Infrastructure in America, federal agencies will solicit applications for project funding “as soon as practicable.”

This will likely lead to intense competition between states, counties, cities, tribal governments, other government entities, and private concerns to secure federal funds with winning proposals.

The exception to the open-ended distribution model applies to funding of the Rural Infrastructure Program, which will receive $50 billion of the overall $200 billion federal expenditure to “provide for significant investment in rural infrastructure to address long-unmet needs.”

Rural Infrastructure Program distribution would follow a “rural formula” calculated to ensure that “each state would receive no less than a specified statutory minimum and no more than a specified statutory maximum of the Rural Infrastructure Program formula funds, automatically.”

Help us determine infrastructure needs in your state or city

No matter how American Infrastructure Initiative funds are distributed, $200 billion dispersed among 50 states, as well as tribal lands and U.S. territories, will likely not be enough to address every infrastructure need.

Can you write a summary or post a photo of an infrastructure need in your state, county, or city?

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Talk

Please edit the following section to add story ideas for WikiTribune.

  • What’s the most pressing infrastructure improvement need where you live?
  • The American Infrastructure Initiative says it will remove regulatory barriers and streamline the permitting process for infrastructure projects. What consequences might this have in Congress and on the ground where you live?
  • Which parts of the 55-page Legislative Outline for Rebuilding Infrastructure in America are being most overlooked and need better reporting?
  • Will the federal government’s $200 billion expenditure actually “spur at least $1.5 trillion in infrastructure investments”? If so, where will this $1.5 trillion come from?
  • Which countries or places would the United States benefit from studying as it seeks to improve its own infrastructure?
  • If you live outside the United States (or even if you don’t), how does the general state of U.S. infrastructure compare with infrastructure in other parts of the world?
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