Dan Columbini | P3 Bulletin
Exclusive: Industry responds to appointment of Elaine Chao as Transportation Secretary; decision a “sign of things to come”; ex-Goldman banker set for Treasury
The P3 industry has reacted enthusiastically to President-elect Donald Trump’s appointment of Elaine Chao as the new federal Transportation Secretary.
Trump named Chao in the role yesterday as he begins to put together his team that will be responsible for overseeing a proposed overhaul of US infrastructure.
“Elaine Chao is a proven leader and expert in the transportation field. She knows private finance, P3s, Washington, and what it takes to get things done,” said John Parkinson, executive director for the Association for the Improvement of American Infrastructure (AIAI).
“Having someone with her experience leading the department while Congress debates a new infrastructure package is a huge plus for industry, and for the hopes of making pro-P3 innovative policy proposals a reality.”
Sources also told P3 Bulletin that the decision was a sign of how Trump intends to deliver on his plans.
“The appointment of Elaine Chao is spot on,” said Michael Likosky. “It would have been a mistake to appoint a seasoned non-federal transportation person.
“Likewise, appointing someone who is new to government generally would have been a mistake. President-elect Trump is signaling to the market that he plans to get things done and straight away with someone who knows how DC works and transportation there works too.”
Meanwhile, Trump has appointed former Goldman Sachs banker Steven Mnuchin as his pick for Treasury Secretary. Mnuchin has promised to undertake a major overhaul of the country’s tax system when in post.