For Immediate Release
Springfield Area Loses $4.5 Million in Federal Transportation Funds
The Ozarks Transportation Organization Board of Directors met Thursday, Dec. 17, and discussed the loss of $4.5 million in federal funding for area transportation improvement projects. The loss of funding is the result of a rescission contained in the last federal surface transportation authorization act, SAFETEA-LU – the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: a Legacy for Users. Congress failed to repeal the rescission prior to SAFETEA-LU’s expiration on September 30, 2009. However, the Springfield area’s congressional delegation worked diligently to pass legislation that repealed the rescission with no success.
The purpose of the discussion at the meeting was to decide how this loss of funding would affect individual communities within the region. The region has received $10.7 million through the passage of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The OTO region was the first in the state to obligate all of the suballocated ARRA funding, working diligently to create jobs and economic development opportunities. Though the rescission was nationwide in scope, it lessens the benefits and impact that ARRA pledged.
Futhermore, the federal transportation bill expired on Sept. 30, 2009 with one continuing resolution that expired Dec. 18th. The continuing resolution funded transportation at 30 percent less than prior years. This action further reduces the region’s ability to fund transportation projects.
OTO supports the efforts of the region’s congressional delegation over the previous six months to address this issue. The Board of Directors encourages all members of Congress to address this issue in future legislation to prevent further transportation rescissions.
Additional information on how this affected the state, please reference: www.modot.mo.gov/newsandinfo/District0News.shtml?action=displaySSI&newsId=40854
The OTO voted to distribute the rescission in the following amounts:
Greene County: $796,532.16
Christian County: $279,084.84
Greene County: $310,990.81
Christian County: $92,531.44
For more information contact: Tim Conklin, Executive Director, Ozarks Transportation Organization, 117 Park Central Square, Suite 107, Springfield MO 65806, 417-836-5442.
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