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With federal transportation funding about to run dry, President Barack Obama is taking steps to boost the flow of private ...
dollars into public works projects. (July 17)
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SHOTLIST:ABC POOL - AP CLIENTS ONLYWilmington, Delaware - July 17, 20141. SOUNDBITE (English) President Barack Obama, (D) United States:"First-class infrastructure attracts investment, and it creates first-class jobs. Unfortunately our investment in transportation lags behind a lot of other countries. Chian is doing more, Germany is doing more. They are putting money back into building the infrastructure we need to grow over the long term. And if Washington was working the way it's supposed to Congress would be creating jobs right now."2. SOUNDBITE (English) President Barack Obama, (D) United States:"So what I've done, earlier this year, I put a plan forward to rebuild our infrastructure in a long term, responsible way. A plan that would supports millions of jobs, would give cities and states and private investors the certainty they need to hire more workers faster."3. SOUNDBITE (English) President Barack Obama, (D) United States: "Today we are launching what we call the Build America Investment iniative. And as part of it we are building a one stop shop for citites and states looking to partner with the private sector to fund infrastructure projects. There are a lot of investors who want to back infrastructure projects because when it's done right, they then get a steady long term investment, they get a steady return."STORYLINE:With federal transportation funding about to run dry, President Barack Obama is taking steps to boost the flow of private dollars into public works projects.The new initiative is designed to encourage collaboration between state and local governments and private-sector investors, expand the market for public-private partnerships and make greater use of federal credit programs. Obama was to announce the initiative in Delaware, using the recently closed I-495 bridge at the Port of Wilmington as a backdrop.The bridge was closed indefinitely last month after four support columns were found to be tilting, forcing 90,000 daily drivers to find another way through downtown Wilmington. Officials think a mountain of dirt that was dumped there by a contractor caused soil beneath the bridge columns to shift.Obama's trip is part of a broader effort to press Congress to keep money flowing into the Highway Trust Fund, the source of federal aid to states for surface transportation projects. The fund is expected to begin running out of money next month unless lawmakers act.