In early March, the National Governors Association hosted an intimate workshop with State IIJA coordinators and AASHTO leaders, focused on implementation of the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA). Approximately half the nation’s Governors have appointed coordinators to oversee implementation of the IIJA across their cabinets, and over a dozen coordinators gathered to discuss interagency collaboration and funding and financing opportunities to deliver transformational infrastructure investments in their home states. They also deepened connections to federal partners in the Biden Administration tasked with promulgating rules, guidance, and grant criteria for programs contained in the new law.
Coordinators heard from a panel on effective coordination and collaboration between state and federal agencies that included Samantha Silverberg, Deputy White House Infrastructure Coordinator; Christine Harada, Executive Director of the Federal Permitting Improvement Steering Council; and two of their own – Allison Mayer, Deputy Chief of Staff and Infrastructure Director for Maryland Governor Larry Hogan; and Marty Chavez, Senior Infrastructure Advisor for New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham.
Later, they discussed maximizing the promise of the IIJA through the funding and financing lens with Morteza Farajian, Executive Director of the Build America Bureau; Katie Kramer, Vice President of the Council of Development Finance Agencies, David Agnew, Managing Director at Macquarie Group representing the Global Infrastructure Investors Association; and Avi Schwartz, Principle for Infrastructure and Capital Projects at Deloitte.
The gathering afforded the opportunity for states and federal agencies to share updates and convey feedback on upcoming rulemakings and recent guidance during a time where effective collaboration and coordination is critical. The group was also joined by White House Infrastructure Coordinator Mitch Landrieu at a reception Thursday evening.
The event, which was held in conjunction with the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials’ (AASHTO) Washington Briefing, continues to build on the partnerships NGA has built in recent months since passage of the IIJA. NGA will continue to collect and share timely, actionable insights and updates from the federal government, states and territories, and private sector partners as IIJA implementation progresses.