Trump Donates Salary to DOT to ‘Rebuild and Modernize’ Nation’s Infrastructure

By Melanie Arter | February 13, 2018 | 7:49 PM EST

White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders (right) presents Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao (center right) with a check for President Donald Trump's fourth quarter salary (Screenshot of White House video)

( - President Donald Trump donated his fourth quarter salary to the Department of Transportation, the White House announced Tuesday.

The move comes one day after the president unveiled his $1.5 trillion infrastructure plan.


White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said the president’s salary will go to support DOT programs “to rebuild and modernize our crumbling infrastructure.”

Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao was on hand for the announcement, accompanied by two other DOT officials - Undersecretary of Policy Derek Kan and Senior Advisor to the Secretary of Infrastructure Jim Ray.

“As many of you have heard yesterday, 12 federal agencies have been working with the White House on the comprehensive infrastructure proposal that the president announced yesterday. Transportation is one component. The proposal also includes energy, drinking and wastewater, broadband, and veterans hospitals, as well,” Secretary Chao said.

“The goal of the president's proposal is to stimulate at least $1.5 trillion in infrastructure investment, which includes a minimum of $200 billion in direct federal funding, and a key element is to empower decision-making at the state and the local level because state and local officials know best the infrastructure needs of their communities,” she said.

The secretary said the principles behind the president’s infrastructure plan are: using federal funds as “seed money to encourage infrastructure investment by the states, localities, and the private sector” as well as to provide for the infrastructure needs of rural communities. It also calls for streamlining project delivery and investing in “in transformative projects that benefit everyone.”

“We are already applying these principles to the Department of Transportation's major existing infrastructure grant programs, including, for example, the INFRA grants, and that is why these two gentlemen to my right are here -- because their offices will be among those at the Department of Transportation that will be taking the applications and also administering these INFRA grants,” Chao said.

“This quarter, as mentioned, the president has generously decided to donate his annual salary to the Department's INFRA Grant Programs. INFRA directly reflects the president's proposal by providing dedicated, discretionary funding for projects that address critical issues facing our nation's highways and bridges and ports,” the secretary said.

“Under the INFRA program, states and localities that secure some funding or financing of their own are given higher priority access to federal funds. In addition, INFRA also reserves at least 25 percent of its funding to be awarded to rural projects,” she said.

“So infrastructure is the backbone of our economy, and it's key to keeping our country competitive. The president's proposal will create new jobs, strengthen our economy, and improve the quality of life for everyone,” Chao added.


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