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House passes transportation bill

The following article discusses the implications of the transportation bill passed by the House on Friday, April 1, 2011. This transportation budget supports projects that will enhance overall transportation throughout Vermont. It also budgets in specific projects for sidewalk creation/repair and other pedestrian/bicycle friendly proposals, which will help to increase mobility among Vermonters and make rural towns more accessible. Source: Brattleboro Reformer, April 2, 2011, by Chris Garofolo “BRATTLEBORO — The Vermont House has passed a $544 million transportation budget that will continue the state’s ambitious resurfacing goals of more than 200 miles of interstate and state highways. The spending bill’s final passage came on the House floor Friday morning, proposing a $137 million increase from previous budgets without federal stimulus funds for transportation investments. Those figures include a 36 percent ($20 million) increase from pre-stimulus level funding for paving on 100 miles of interstate highways and 135 of state highways. It also more than doubles — to $4 million — the amount of money that will be devoted to fixing roads affected by the winter weather and boosts funding for rail improvements and bridge repairs. Funding for bridge and culvert repairs, set at $112 million, is also nearly double the pre-stimulus spending level. The town highway aid was level-funded at $25 million, as was the Class 2 town highway roadway program at $7.2 million. “We are pleased that the House has supported the Shumlin administration’s strong commitment to transportation investments this year,” said Transportation Secretary Brian Searles. “Increasing our transportation spending helps create more Vermont jobs and grow Vermont’s economy.” Rep. Mollie Burke, a Brattleboro Progressive/Democrat and member of the House Transportation Committee, said the legislation also creates a new municipal sidewalk program to disburse grants to communities for projects to construct or improve sidewalks located on most town or state highways…” Full Story: House passes transportation bill PDF of Story: House passes transportation bill

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