Legislation aims to create predictable funding stream for local infrastructure investment, create jobs
PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Speaker of the House Gordon Fox and General Treasurer Gina M. Raimondo tomorrow will announce a legislative proposal that takes action to spur economic growth, while improving Rhode Island's locally-maintained roads and bridges.
"As leaders, our top priority is getting our economy moving again by taking action and creating opportunities for growth and job creation," said Raimondo. "Establishing a predictable, innovative alternative for cities and towns to finance their road and bridge improvements is an important cornerstone to building a vibrant economy for our state."
"This strategic policy proposal links proven, smart financing for infrastructure with an opportunity for steady growth and job creation," said Fox. "By establishing a sustainable funding stream, municipalities will be able to make long-term plans separate from the uncertainty of the annual budget appropriations process. It will also help the construction trades plan for steady work, keeping projects more cost-effective."
The proposed Municipal Road and Bridge Revolving Fund calls for the program to be administered by the AAA-rated Rhode Island Clean Water Finance Authority. Funding this initiative requires a long-term investment commitment from the state, which would enable municipalities to borrow a steady, discounted stream of funds in perpetuity.
The legislation that will be formally submitted in the coming weeks:
• Builds on the success of the Rhode Island Clean Water Finance Authority, an expansion modeled after other states
• Improves municipal access to capital at lower-rates for long-range planning and infrastructure investment • Provides local budget relief by lowering annual debt service payments
• Creates economic opportunities for the construction trades and their suppliers
• Builds on the momentum of pension reform
Who: Fox, Raimondo, Senate President Teresa Paiva Weed, Dan Beardsley, executive director of the Rhode Island League of Cities and Towns
What: Unveiling of an economic proposal - Municipal Road and Bridge Revolving Fund
When: Thursday, March 21, 2013 11:30 a.m. to noon
Where: House Lounge (Second floor)