Transportation Industry 2017 – Political Outlook

Transportation 2017 Political Outlook Image

With the new year came a new president. President Trump took office on January 20th and is part of an administration that is sure to see some major changes unfold in the transportation sector over the next four years. Here are a few ways lives may be impacted by politics when it comes to transportation, especially in regards to our nation’s infrastructure.

President Trump’s Infrastructure Proposal

We are currently still waiting for President Trump to introduce the legislation he promised to deliver within his first 100 days in office. Such legislation would “spur $1 trillion in infrastructure investment” over the course of a decade. It was also said that the bill would leverage “public-private partnerships, and private investments through tax incentives.”

According to an article in The Hill, a majority of Americans (66 percent) oppose the infrastructure proposal since such dependency on the private sector for funding may come at a cost to drivers. In an effort to win back the money spent on rebuilding our nation’s interstate system, we could expect to see an increase in tolled roads and user fees.

Incoming Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao

Elaine Chao was chosen by President Donald Trump to replace former Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. In his “exit memo,” Foxx stressed that improving and expanding America’s transportation system will remain a big issue.

Chao seems up to the challenge as the second item on her list of top priorities is tackling infrastructure repairs and expansions. The Transportation Secretary also cited bridging the disparities between urban and rural transportation as an important issue, as well as “good stewardship on behalf of the American people.”

Chao interprets good stewardship to be the effective enforcement of safety measures; getting the most benefit from the Department’s expenditures, including strengthening its planning and acquisition; and, preparing for the future by considering new technologies in our infrastructures.

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