Facing $37 million in budget cuts, the Connecticut Department of Transportation (CTDOT) on July 22 released an updated plan that includes decreasing maintenance work, delaying personnel hiring, and raising transit fees. The reduction in funding, a result of a decreased state general budget as well as declining revenue in the state’s Special Transportation Fund, will lead to a $19 million cut to the CTDOT’s road and bridge program and an $18 million cut to the public transportation program. On the same day, Gov. Dannel Malloy (D) sent a letter to the state legislature highlighting the impacts of decreased transportation investment on the state and calling on lawmakers to increase revenue for infrastructure.
Other states have recently been grappling with inadequate transportation funding this year, resulting in project delays and cancellations, including:
- The Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT) announced in an April 20 news release that it was delaying $553 million in road projects scheduled for fiscal years 2017 through 2019, including 14 projects with an estimated construction cost of $271 million set to begin in FY 2017; nine projects totaling $247 million scheduled for FY 2018; and two projects worth $35 million penciled in for FY 2019.
- Kentucky Transportation Cabinet Secretary Greg Thomas outlined his “Pause-50” program June 7, which calls for a yearlong delay in funding state projects in order to recoup the ailing Kentucky Road Fund’s balance.
- Due to a constrained budget, the Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) announced July 11 that many new highway “capacity” projects to add lanes or build roads would be delayed as they focus a majority of funding on road maintenance and safety.
- The California Transportation Commission (CTC) adopted a five-year transportation funding plan that cuts or delays $1.5 billion in highway, bridge and transit projects. The plan cuts $754 million in projects from CTC’s current transportation budget. An additional $755 million in planned projects will be delayed until 2019-20 or 2020-21.
- New Jersey halted all non-essential, state-funded transportation projects July 8 as the state legislature and Gov. Chris Christie (R) debated how to provide new revenue for the state’s depleted Transportation Trust Fund. At time of this post, a resolution to this crisis has not yet been reached.
- A state budget shortfall is forcing the Montana Department of Transportation to delay requests for bids on about $144.5 million in road construction projects until May 2017. The projects were slated to be paid for with $130 million in federal funds and $14.5 million from the state. Now, anticipated federal transportation funding increases are being jeopardized by budget wrangling in Washington, D.C. The Dec. 8 announcement came a week after a proposed $7.7 million cut to the Montana Highway Patrol, which receives revenue from the state gas tax.