The President Wants to Bring Outcomes to Infrastructure

By:  Dr. John Brown Miller The Trump administration’s Legislative Outline for Rebuilding Infrastructure in America will add the measurement of outcomes against infrastructure plans to federal grant policy.  That is a revolutionary change for the better.  The program includes $200 billion in new, direct federal spending over a ten-year period, designed to attract $1.3 trillion in

Read more…

The Fiction of Federally Funded Infrastructure

Congressional Infrastructure Dead End – Earmarks or Nothing By:  Dr. John Brown Miller [Originally published by in The Hill on June 9, 2018.] Members of Congress are used to logrolling each other to move as many projects from their district’s wish list onto a joint list of projects that can garner 218 votes in the

Read more…

Infrastructure Upside Down – The Gateway Project

Infrastructure Off-Track:  the Gateway Project to New York By:  Dr. John Brown Miller [Originally published by The Washington Examiner on April 8, 2018.] The federal role in financing state infrastructure remains upside down.  Instead of using life cycle competition to confirm value for money, Congress remains focused on earmarking state projects in federal appropriation bills. 

Read more…

Pavlov’s Infrastructure Dogs

Pavlov’s Dogs and Federal Infrastructure Dollars By:  Dr. John Brown Miller Miller was professor of civil engineering at MIT, chair of the ABA Section of Public Contract Law, and is an expert on infrastructure procurement.  Miller is on LinkedIn and Twitter @JohnBrownMiller In a famous behavior psychology study, Ivan Pavlov’s dogs showed that human behavior

Read more…

Congress Closed America’s Infrastructure Bank – Reopen It

Our economy – not government – needs to invest more in infrastructure. By:  Dr. John Brown Miller [Originally published by the Washington Examiner on February 5, 2018.] Congressman John Faso’s Op Ed on January 23 presents the arguments for establishing an American Infrastructure Bank.  The national grade of “D” grade received from the American Society

Read more…

Rethinking Our Century-Old Approach to Paying for Infrastructure

Our crumbling infrastructure can be fixed if we change how we fund capital investments and maintenance. By:  Dr. John Brown Miller [Originally published by Route Fifty on December 18 2017.] In the United States, we routinely separate “capital” activities from “maintenance and repair” activities. This made sense in 1916, when Congress began funding the US

Read more…

We can lower infrastructure price tag . . .

  By:  Dr. John Brown Miller [Originally published by THE HILL on November 22 2017, without charts.]  This is the third in a three part series on infrastructure. As American infrastructure continues to decline, the endless debate whether “public” or “private” infrastructure is “cheaper” is much more amusing than substantive. The four typical cash flows

Read more…

Federal Funds might delay state infrastructure problems, but they’ll never solve them

By:  Dr. John Brown Miller [Originally published by THE HILL on November 21, 2017, without charts.]  This is the second part in a three part series on infrastructure. President Trump’s $1 trillion infrastructure proposal has highlighted the role of the federal government in state and local infrastructure projects.  State and local governments hold approximately $4

Read more…