Infrastructure policy seems to leave room for consensus, so we looked to long-time public servant Ray LaHood and public-private partnership guru Steve Park to explain the contours for The National Law Journal’s latest Regulatory Face Off.

LaHood served as the 16th U.S. Department of Transportation secretary. Before that, he was a Republican congressman from Illinois. He’s now a senior policy adviser at DLA Piper, splitting his time between Washington and Illinois.

And Park leads Ballard Spahr’s P3 and infrastructure group, working on deals that have attempted to privatize highways and that financed bridges, utility systems and housing developments. He is based in Philadelphia.

National Law Journal: What’s the biggest need you see right now in infrastructure and transportation policy?

Steve Park: To put it another way, deferred maintenance is the easiest thing for not only mayors and governors and county officials, but school officials and universities and people who look after buildings to cut if there are other budget issues. If you are a mayor and you need to pay your pension, the easiest thing for you to do is to just cut your maintenance budget because you think your building is going to stick around for however long. So what if the air conditioning doesn’t work, right?

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