President Obama plans to promote private investment in infrastructure through a series of tax proposals and administrative actions. Though the financial specifics are still unknown, the Obama administration is hoping for a bipartisan agreement because the measure will use funding other than new federal money. Qualified public infrastructure bonds could finance the policy. If so, they would be the first bonds used for public-private partnerships and they would be exempt from the alternative minimum tax (AMT). In a fact sheet outlining the policy, the White House states,
“Private capital is not a substitute for public investment…But in the absence of Congress acting on this common-sense proposal, the president will continue to do whatever he can through his own authority to promote American economic growth where there is need or opportunity. And right now, there is a real opportunity to put private capital to work in revitalizing U.S. infrastructure.”
Obama will likely elaborate on this policy in his State of the Union address tonight.