President Barack Obama called for Congress to approve $302 billion to improve the nation’s aging highways and bridges, proposing to pay for them by closing tax loopholes, as the country’s Highway Trust Fund is slated to run out this fall.

Obama said the cash infusion would save 700,000 jobs that rely heavily on federal funding and could make a difference in the pace of economic recovery. A significant portion of the country’s infrastructure is either broken or outdated, the President said.

Previously, the Highway Trust Fund paid for much of this type of improvement. The fund gained income from the federal fuel tax, which hasn’t been raised to meet inflation in 20 years, said Steve T. Park, an attorney with Ballard Spahr’s P3/Infrastructure practice.

“Everyone understands there’s a big need for roads and bridges; they’re very degraded,” Mr. Park said.


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