Introduction to Article by Tom DeWeese of
American Policy Center
(full article linked below)
President Trump is calling for a major new investment for rebuilding the nation’s infrastructure of highways, bridges and more. There is no question that it needs to be done. However, it’s vitally important that local, state and federal government agencies avoid calls to fund this massive effort through so-called Public/Private Partnerships (PPPs). Local officials must understand that there is a vast difference between calls for a competitive biding process to select private companies for the projects verses an actual partnership with government.
During the first years of the Clinton Administration in the early 1990s, there was much fanfare about a new policy to “reinvent government.” It was sold as a way to make government more efficient and less costly. It would, said its proponents, “bring business technologies to public service.” In addition, the promise was that the new way would bring in private money to programs and projects, rather than tax dollars.
Pro-business, anti-big-government conservatives and libertarians were intrigued. The backbone of the plan was a call for “public/private partnerships.” Now that sounded like their kind of program. Government, they said, would finally tap the tremendous power of the entrepreneurial process and the force of the free market into making government more effective and efficient. It sounded so revolutionary and so American.