Is the WIFIA Loan Program Successful?
23 Pages Posted: 7 Jul 2020
Date Written: June 30, 2020
US EPA’s Water Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act Loan Program (WIFIA or the Program) was enacted in 2014 and became operational in 2017. The Program has now completed three rounds of loan application solicitations, each of which was fully subscribed with qualified applications. Publicly available information on selected applications is a significant data set on WIFIA results to date.
On the surface, the Program appears to have had a successful start. But is it working as intended to improve US water infrastructure? What do WIFIA results indicate about its future trajectory, and whether the initial success is substantive and sustainable? And – most immediately – should the Program be considered in connection with federal policy responses to the COVID-19 crisis?
This opinion paper examines these questions and offers preliminary conclusions on what the WIFIA Loan Program actually appears to be doing, why that is likely to be both useful and sustainable, and its possible role in post-pandemic policy.
Keywords: WIFIA, Federal Loan Programs, COVID-19 Economic Recovery
JEL Classification: G, H
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation