Media reports indicate that a group of Senators is pushing a bipartisan infrastructure ‘compromise’ that is much smaller than the initial White House proposal. The plan would rely heavily on privatization schemes that will undermine public control and prove to be costly for households and small businesses.
In response, Food & Water Watch Public Water for All Director Mary Grant released the following statement:
“This Senate compromise package would pile further burdens on communities struggling to recover from the COVID pandemic. It promotes privatization and so-called ‘public-private partnerships’ instead of making public investments in publicly-owned infrastructure. This package does not provide adequate funding to rebuild and repair our country’s infrastructure; it is nothing more than an outrageously expensive way to borrow funds, with the ultimate bill paid back by households and local businesses in the form of higher rates.
“Communities across the country have been ripped off by public-private schemes that enrich corporations and Wall Street investors. The most sensible infrastructure solution is to provide robust public funding for publicly-owned projects, which would discourage price-gouging by corporate interests, protect public control over these precious assets, and save everyone money. The most comprehensive funding solution on the table is the WATER Act (HR1352, S916), which would provide $35 billion a year to fully fund the state revolving funds and other programs at the level that is needed.
“This deal is a disaster in the making, and it must be rejected.”