The U.S. Senate’s top Democrat on Tuesday vowed to oppose any infrastructure plan by President Donald Trump that would rely on “tax credits for developers” to rebuild the nation’s roads, bridges, airports and other such structures.
Senator Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer made the comments in a press conference to unveil a $1 trillion infrastructure plan that Democrats say would generate 15 million jobs. Trump earlier on Tuesday signed an executive action to expedite environmental approvals for high-priority infrastructure projects.
“We will not support tax credits for developers,” Schumer told reporters. He also warned that Democrats would work to include environmental protections in any infrastructure measure that moves through the Republican-controlled Senate.
Democrats argue that an investment plan relying on developer tax credits would fail to generate enough construction and would result in the creation of too many toll roads to finance costs over the long term.
Instead, Senate Democrats are seeking heavy investments by the government, including $210 billion to rebuild roads and bridges, $110 billion for water and sewage projects, $180 billion for rail and bus systems and $75 billion to rebuild schools.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, a Republican, has criticized plans that substantially add to the U.S. government’s budget deficits, and his support would be essential to any infrastructure measure succeeding in Congress.
Trump campaigned throughout last year on a promise to pursue a $1 trillion infrastructure program, which would come at a time when major public works projects are crumbling. The economy, however, also faces a shortage of the skilled workers needed to build roads, bridges, airports and other facilities.