North Texas officials supportive of Trump infrastructure plan

President Trump announced a $1.5 trillion infrastructure spending plan that leaders in North Texas hope gets the greenlight.

The administration's plan is centered on using $200 billion in federal money to leverage more than $1 trillion in local and state tax dollars to fix America's infrastructure, such as roads, highways, ports and airports. The administration released a 55-page "legislative outline" for lawmakers who will write the legislation.

Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price, the only Texan invited for the president's White House announcement, hopes for a more streamlined funding process.

About 100,000 people move to North Texas every year and paying to fix and upgrade roads is one of the biggest challenges. Economists say competition among cities and states will be a driving factor in getting funds.

"It's those who are most aggressive and can find a way to bring private investors in these are the ones who are gonna get the funds,” said Allyn Needham, Needham Economic Analysis.

The North Central Texas Council of Governments thinks Loop 820 and I-20 on the west and the LBJ expansion project east of Central Expressway are two top priorities.

Under the president's plan, federal money pays 20 percent of the projects in matching funds for what cities, states and private partnerships come up with on their own.

"That's basically what we did with TX-DOT over the last 15 years in building projects like LBJ and the North Tarrant Express,” said NCTCOG head Michael Morris.

Morris thinks the president's approach comes at a good time for North Texas.

“Even though the federal government is moving toward what we have done in the past, the state government seems to be moving away from these inventive leveraging items and wish to fund projects in a more traditional way, yet they haven't come up with enough money to fund these big projects,” Morris said.

Trump also wants to streamline the process for permitting highway projects that often wait years to get started.