Infrastructure” is a boring bureaucratic word that undersells a serious problem facing Gov. J.B. Pritzker: Illinois needs to repair its crumbling roads and bridges. Is that a slightly sexier sell? Pritzker and lawmakers are hashing out plans for a six-year capital construction spending spree that could total an astonishing $41.5 billion. Now, do we have your attention?
A significant investment in the upkeep of highways, mass transit systems and other, pardon us, infrastructure is overdue. The last capital program was approved a decade ago. Yet given Springfield’s profligate ways, we’ve got two basic concerns: Where would all this money come from? And would it be spent responsibly on the right projects? We’ve got our doubts, especially since the governor expects to borrow billions of dollars to make the magic happen. As if Illinois taxpayers don’t already face towering mountains of public debts.