House members revive infrastructure bank proposal

But in a "Dear Colleague" letter released on Thursday, the group of 15 Republicans and 15 Democrats pressed again for a national transportation fund.

The group said it would be possible this time to attract private investment into a national infrastructure bank with minimal federal spending. 

"Join us in helping to rebuild and expand our nation’s infrastructure by cosponsoring H.R. 2084," the letter said. "This bipartisan legislation will generate millions of jobs and grow our economy by creating a $750 billion privately-financed mechanism to rebuild our country’s infrastructure at zero cost to the taxpayer."

The legislation, dubbed the Partnership to Build America Act, calls for an initial federal outlay of $50 billion, which has been proposed before.

Most of the previous infrastructure bank proposals have come from the Democratic-controlled Senate, which is why supporters say this new action in the GOP-led House is important.  

In their "Dear Colleague" letter, the lawmakers supporting the new House infrastructure bank proposal said it would leverage [the initial $50 billion] to provide low-cost loans and loan guarantees totaling $750 billion to state and local infrastructure projects and public-private partnerships. 

"The [American Infrastructure Fund] will sell Infrastructure Bonds at a 50-year maturity that pay 1 percent interest to capitalize the $50 billion fund," the letter said. "These Infrastructure Bonds are not guaranteed by the U.S. government. Corporations are incentivized to purchase these relatively unattractive bonds through repatriating approximately $4.00 of their overseas earnings tax-free for every $1.00 they invest in the bonds. The AIF will lend to states and municipalities to help finance qualified transportation, energy, communications, water, and education infrastructure projects."

The letter was signed by Rep. John Delaney (D-Md.) and Luke Messer (R-Ind.)

The bill to create the infrastructure bank is co-sponsored by Reps. Ron BarberRonald (Ron) Sylvester BarberPrinciples and actions mean more than Jeff Flake’s words Giffords to lawmakers avoiding town halls: 'Have some courage' Ten House seats Dems hope Trump will tilt MORE (D-Ariz.); Ami BeraAmerish (Ami) Babulal BeraWeek ahead: Defense spending ties up budget talks Week ahead in defense: Spending fight consumes Congress Out of their lane: DC celebs go bowling for charity MORE (D-Calif.); John Carney (D-Del.); Gerry ConnollyGerald (Gerry) Edward ConnollyFlorida students turn to activism in wake of shooting House Dem joins protest at NRA headquarters following Florida school shooting Trump budget threatens local transit projects MORE (D-Va.); Tulsi GabbardTulsi GabbardHawaii reps call for hearing on missile alerts after false alarm Emergency response worker temporarily reassigned after false Hawaii missile alert Hawaii rep: False alarm shows need for Trump to talk with North Korea MORE (D-Hawaii); Joe GarciaJose (Joe) Antonio GarciaCurbelo Dem rival lashes out over immigration failure Hispanic Caucus to invite Republicans to join Vulnerable House incumbents build up war chests MORE (D-Fla.); Joseph Kennedy (D-Mass.); Ron KindRonald (Ron) James KindIt's time we start using 'The Investing in Opportunity Act' Americans worried about retirement should look to employee ownership House passes concealed carry gun bill MORE (D-Wis.); Ann McLane Kuster (D-N.H.); Jim MoranJames (Jim) Patrick MoranDems face close polls in must-win Virginia Billionaire Trump donor hires lobbyists to help vets Lawmakers: Chaffetz has a point on housing stipend MORE (D-Va.); Patrick Murphy (D-Fla.); Scott Peters (D-Calif.); Jared Polis (D-Colo.); Dutch Ruppersberger (D-Mass.); Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz); Andy BarrGarland (Andy) Hale BarrHouse Republicans add 5 members to incumbent protection program House GOP super PAC expands field offices to 27 districts Seven primary races to watch in 2018 MORE (R-Ky.); Tom Cole (R-Okla.); Rodney Davis (R-Ill.); Mike  Fitzpatrick (R-Pa.); Chris Gibson (R-N.Y.); Bill Johnson (R-Ohio); David Joyce (R-Ohio); Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.); Robert Pittenger (R-Pa.); Scott RigellEdward (Scott) Scott RigellGOP rushes to embrace Trump GOP lawmaker appears in Gary Johnson ad Some in GOP say Trump has gone too far MORE (R-Va.); Steve Stivers (R-Ohio); Michael Turner (R-Ohio); Ed WhitfieldWayne (Ed) Edward WhitfieldWhy Republicans took aim at an ethics watchdog What Azerbaijan wants from Israel? Overnight Energy: Green group sues Exxon over climate science MORE (R-Ky.) and Ted YohoTheodore (Ted) Scott YohoTo end sugar subsidies, conservatives can't launch a frontal attack Fierce battle erupts over releasing intelligence report Trouble brewing as GOP struggles with spending bill votes MORE (R-Fla.).