A federal plan to revamp the national transportation system would remove the $15 billion cap on private-activity bonds used to finance construction of highways and rail-to-truck freight transfer facilities, withhold federal monies for some large projects unless public-private partnerships have been considered, and encourage use of state infrastructure banks.

The plan, which also calls for more use of rail freight and the consolidation of more than 100 programs into eight intermodal programs, was unveiled earlier this week by Secretary of Transportation Mary E. Peters as a set of reforms to be incorporated into long-term highway legislation that Congress will develop by the end of fiscal 2009.

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