August 31, 2005
U.S. Senator Kit Bond today joined Governor Matt Blunt and Missouri Department of Transportation officials to announce an historic first for Missouri.
"This is an historic time for transportation in Missouri," said Bond. "For the first time in Missouri's history, we will receive more in federal highway funds than we pay to the federal government in gas taxes. That's real progress."
Bond, chairman of the Senate Transportation and Infrastructure subcommittee, coauthored the federal highway bill which was signed into law earlier this month. The five-year bill provides $286.5 billion for our nation's highways, roads and bridges. Bond announced that Missouri will receive almost $1.3 billion in new highway funds as a result of the bill. The new bill provides $862 million per year, a $200 million per year increase. Also, Bond secured $467.5 million for Missouri transportation projects statewide.
For years, Bond fought to increase the return on the dollar that Missourians pay in federal transportation taxes. In 1987, when Bond first joined the Senate, Missourians received 76 cents on the dollar. Bond ensured that under the new highway bill, Missourians will receive an increase from the current 91 cents to more than 98 cents on the dollar.
The new formula funding, combined with project dollars, means an first for Missouri transportation funding. With Bond's role in writing the highway bill, for the first time in Missouri's history, the state will receive more in federal highway funds than paid to the federal government in gas taxes.
Bond stressed that this historic funding increase for Missouri is particularly good news for the state's economy. The U.S. Department of Transportation estimates that every $1 billion in new federal investment in highways creates approximately 47,500 jobs. These are good construction jobs, paying an average $19 per hour, 23 percent higher than the average private sector wage.
"In my three decades of service to Missouri working for economic development, I have seen clearly how good roads mean good jobs," said Bond. "Missouri's $1.3 billion share will result in better roads and put thousands of people to work."
Missouri's increase in funding means more than new jobs, however, Bond pointed out. Recent studies show nearly 43,000 Americans lose their lives each year on America's highways. Almost one-third of those lives are lost because of inadequate highways. Most importantly, increased funding for Missouri's transportation infrastructure means safer travel for the families driving on the state's roads and bridges.
July 28, 2005
Missouri to Gain Almost $1.3 Billion in New Highway Funds
With negotiators reaching an agreement on a new transportation bill, U.S. Senator Kit Bond, chairman of the Senate Transportation and Infrastructure subcommittee, today announced that Missouri will receive almost $1.3 billion in new highway funds and that he has successfully secured $467.5 million for Missouri transportation projects statewide.
Bond hailed today's conference agreement between Senate and House negotiators on a $286.5 billion federal highway bill, setting the stage for final passage later this week. Bond said the new bill will provide almost $1.3 billion in additional highway funding for Missouri over the life of the five-year bill.
"This is about putting people to work and saving lives," said Bond, who co-authored the legislation. "It has been a long time coming, but all the hard work and time has been worth the wait. Missouri has emerged from this process in a better position than ever. This bill will help build a stronger and safer Missouri for generations."
For years, Bond has fought to increase the return on the dollar that Missourians pay in federal transportation taxes. In the agreement today, Bond successfully fought to increase Missouri's share to 98 cents on the dollar. In 1987, when Bond joined the Senate, Missourians received 76 cents on the dollar.
The new formula ensures that Missouri will receive more than $200 million in new highway dollars each year. Under the bill, Missouri will receive $862 million through the formula programs each year, up from $661 million in the last transportation bill.
On top of the extra funding provided by the new formula, Bond also secured over $265 million in additional new funds for specific Missouri highway projects, bringing the total new highway funding level for Missouri to almost $1.3 billion over five years.
In addition to the highway and bridge funds, Bond secured new dollars for the following projects: $50 million for statewide transit projects; $25 million for a non-motorized pilot project in Columbia; $27.5 million for research; and authorization for two new Metrolink Extensions.
Recent studies show nearly 43,000 Americans lose their lives each year on America's highways and that every $1 billion in new federal investment in highways will create 47,500 jobs.
More on Bond's Efforts to Pass a Federal Highway Bill