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Public Infrastructure – The Investment We Need to Make

Does saving $2,000 a year overall sounds good to you? If so, read on!

Public infrastructure is a bipartisan issue no one should ignore in the upcoming 2020 elections. It should be considered not just when comparing presidential candidates, but for all levels of state and federal government. Why? Because proper public infrastructure, or a lack thereof, impacts us all whether we like it or not. From the health and safety of our communities to the ability to efficiently and safely get home, infrastructure plays a part.

The scariest part about this entire conversation is that American’s infrastructure was given a D+. If our infrastructure was a student, it would be held back. The situation has not been improving over the last four years, if anything, it has stayed the same or even gotten worse. So, where do we go from here?

Public Infrastructure Definition

Public infrastructure is broadly defined as all facilities, institutions, structures, and systems that are considered essential to society, its economy, and its overall quality of life. In America, for example, we are blessed to have water treatment facilities that provide us clean and safe water at the turn of a knob – a luxury many countries do not have.

Public infrastructure is divided into these seven categories:

  1. Transportation
  2. Wet/Water
  3. Energy
  4. Information
  5. Government
  6. Institutions
  7. Public Space

The American Society of Civil Engineers ranks various public infrastructures in the US and analyzes the funding that needs to be given and the work that needs to be completed to improve our current state. The image below shows America’s current grades, and it does not look pretty. The single category with a B, our rail system, is little used in our country compared to the other categories. Perhaps that lack of heavy use accounts for the good grade? Of the rest, only THREE categories were given a C.

ASCE 2017 American Infrastructure Report Card

The Future

So, why does it matter if we continue to keep our infrastructure at an overall D+ level? For one, the economic impact is robust. With direct ties to GDP, employment, and even personal income, a failure to fix America’s infrastructure is a failure to support our overall financial well-being.

The video above explains how our underfunded infrastructure cost YOU an estimated $3,400 year. And that’s just the cost to families directly.

Overall, poor infrastructure will add up to a $3.9 trillion loss in the US economy (roughly $433 billion a year from when the report was calculated in 2017), $7 trillion in lost business sales, and 2.5 million jobs lost – all by 2025.

Not funding infrastructure also means a serious loss of health for Americans. Dirty and potentially contaminated drinking and swimming water, increased air pollution and potentially unsafe dams and bridges are all serious risks, and this is only naming a few. Are you willing to risk you and your family’s health by failing to demand a change and elect officials who will help correct this system?

Would You Pay $3 Per Day to Save $3,400 a Year?

Just like anything in life, fixing our infrastructure won’t come free. Funding American’s infrastructure is an INVESTMENT. Investments are defined as “the action or process of investing money for profit or material results.” So, let me ask you – would you be willing to spend an extra $3 a day, or $1,095 a year, if it meant saving you $3,400 by the end of that year? That a net gain of more than $2,000 in your pocket A YEAR!

If you answered yes, the solution is right at our fingertips. Through various proposed taxes, user fees, and increased corporate income tax, elected officials and candidates for office are willing to come up with funding solutions to help improve our overall quality life and ultimately put money back in our pockets.

These initiatives will need community support. Government officials need to know that you – the American public – wants to help fund these solutions so that you may reap the benefits in the long run. And if you like their proposed ideas to fund solutions, it’s important to reach out to your elected officials and tell them your thoughts!

Don’t know where to find your elected officials?  Check out this site that gives you links to federal, state, and local directories.

America – we’ve got this. Let’s show ourselves and the rest of the world that we can achieve better than a failing grade in infrastructure.

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