Sequestration Cuts Could Affect Area Infrastructure Spending | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : News

Sequestration Cuts Could Affect Area Infrastructure Spending

Play associated audio
Sequestration cuts would affect road construction and infrastructure repair budgets.
Mylon Medley
Sequestration cuts would affect road construction and infrastructure repair budgets.

The roads, bridges, and rails that you commute on could be getting considerably less funding for repairs and improvements if automatic federal budget cuts take effect in January.

If Congress fails to pass a long-term deficit-reduction plan, the process know as sequestration takes effect. The highway trust fund would be exempt from cuts, but funds for infrastructure projects could dry up anyway. 

Fred Abouselman is executive director of the National Association of Regional Councils, a group that advocates cooperation among regional governments.  He says general fund revenues, often used to replenish the trust fund, would no longer be available, and the result would not be good for commuters.

"Less money to spend on improvements, more congestion, more potholes, maybe fewer trains, fewer bridges being repaired, fewer bridges being built," says Abouselman. "In general, we will see a continuing decline in both the state of our infrastructure and new infrastructure being built, a significant problem for our region."

He says important infrastructure projects in our region are already short of funds — sequestration would make the situation worse.

Experts also say that what major infrastructure projects local governments do tackle will likely be financed by borrowing, which will be made more expensive by sequestration.

NPR

Snubs And Successes: 6 Lessons Learned From This Year's Emmy Nominations

HBO's Game of Thrones emerged as the most-nominated series with 19 nods for the Primetime Emmy Awards, but new series such as FX's Fargo and HBO's True Detective scored, too.
NPR

'Captain Pizza' Saves The Day, But Doesn't Save Himself A Slice

A pilot found himself hungry during a midflight delay. But instead of just buying a pizza for himself, he bought 50 pizzas for the entire Frontier Airlines plane.
NPR

Administration Officials Defend Funding Request To Stem Border Crisis

President Obama has asked for $3.7 billion to deal with the southern border crisis. There are predictions the number of unaccompanied children entering the U.S. could reach 90,000 by October.
NPR

A New Device Lets You Track Your Preschooler ... And Listen In

LG's KizON wristband lets you keep tabs on your child. But some experts say such devices send the wrong message about the world we live in. And the gadgets raise questions about kids' privacy rights.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.