NUCA NJ Working to Unlock Private Money for More Infrastructure Investment
NUCA NJ is working with Congressman Bill Pascrell (D-NJ) on legislation that would open the door to private investment in water and wastewater infrastructure investment. The initiative would remove water and wastewater infrastructure from under the state volume cap subject to private activity bonds (PABs). PABs are effective in financing long-term, capital-intensive infrastructure projects through public-private partnerships, usually between state and municipal governments and private entities. This approach makes repair and construction of infrastructure more affordable for municipalities and ultimately for American taxpayers, in large part because they utilize private capital in lieu of public debt and shift the risk and long-term debt from the municipality to the private partner. Unfortunately, the federal government limits the number of PABs that can be issued by each state. This state volume cap usually results in PABs being used for more politically attractive, short-term projects and not water infrastructure. Our goal is to pave the way for billions more in private funding to flow into the marketplace. It is unclear at this time if a stand-alone bill, or an amendment to current infrastructure legislation moving through Congress, will be the ultimate strategy but we remain open to both options.