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The Nation : Panel Sees Decay of Public Works System

February 25, 1988

The nation's roads, airports and other public works systems will face a state of desperate disrepair without a massive infusion of public and private funds in the next decade, a blue-ribbon panel warned. The gloomy forecast from the National Council on Public Works Improvement, appointed by President Reagan and Congress, drew an immediate proposal by Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan (D-N.Y.) for legislation to pump an additional $25 billion in federal funds into new regional airports, bridges, subway systems and other projects over the next 10 years. In the short term, there is little "imminent danger of collapse" of public works, the panel noted in its report, "Fragile Foundation." But, if the situation is not faced, "in the long run, our ability to compete in the international economy will be weakened, and our standard of living will suffer."

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