Op-ed: Seeking Equitable, Fair Proposals to Modernize our Inland Waterways Jun 15, 2017 - Infrastructure has been in the national spotlight for months, as President Donald Trump touts his $1 trillion plan. Most of the time, infrastructure discussions have been about highways, railways, water treatment systems, or bridges. But on June 7, President Trump brought laser focus to the needs of the inland waterways lock and dam infrastructure that is, too often, out-of-sight, out-of-mind, when he made a speech on the Ohio River in Cincinnati. Many were elated to hear him describe the waterways as “critical corridors of commerce” and an “American thoroughfare.” He offered no specifics on how this critical infrastructure would be funded, beyond suggesting partnerships between state and local governments, the federal government and taxpayers. Published on the same day as the president’s historic visit, the Post-Dispatch editorial “Trump’s infrastructure plan could signal blues for barge industry” said, “Commercial customers have to pay their fair share of the infrastructure they use,” referring to commercial barge operators on the inland rivers.
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