Rep. Charlie Rangel, D-N.Y., has introduced a new bill that would make permanent qualified school construction bonds and qualified zone academy bonds.

The House Ways and Means Committee member reintroduced Rebuilding America’s School Act, H.R. 1629, last week to increase aid for school construction and renovation across the country. He first introduced the same bill in 2011.

“Almost half of America’s public school buildings were built to educate the baby boomers and are in dire need of repair,” Rangel said in a statement. “The longer we wait to fix our aging schools, the more it will cost our taxpayers to modernize them.”

The QSCB program was established as part of the 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The QZAB program was first authorized in 1997 and extended to 2013.

QSCBs are taxable, tax credit bonds, which can be issued by states and large, local educational agencies to finance school construction or rehabilitation. They can be issued as traditional tax credit bonds, where investors receive tax credits, or as direct-pay bonds, where issuers receive subsidy payments from the Treasury Department equal to the actual interest rate on the bonds or the tax credit rate.

Rangel said that these two bond programs will help finance $400 million in nationwide school modernization projects, including more than $24 million in New York State in 2013 alone. ć

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