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10-08-20 | Association News

AASHTO Requests Funding for DOTs

Association Asks for $37 Billion From Congress

In July, AASHTO predicted that it could take up to five years for state DOTs to recover from the revenue losses they have suffered since the outset of the Coronavirus in the United States. While the recovery has been quicker than the initial estimate, they still believe funding is necessary to help offset the loss in available funds and jobs that DOTs have experienced.

On October 5, Jim Tymon, the executive director of the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO), wrote a letter to Congressional leaders asking for emergency funding for the state Department of Transportations (DOTs) across the country that have been heavily impacted by the pandemic. This is a follow up of the letter he wrote on July 20 asking for the same assistance. Much of the funding that goes towards infrastructural improvements and maintenance comes from fuel taxes that have significantly decreased as a result of the diminished amounts of travel created by COVID.

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The progress of transportation projects throughout the United States have been delayed, and jobs with the states' DOTs have been lost. To counteract these problems, AASHTO requested that the next COVID relief bill include $37 billion to fund state DOTs. The association believes that if Congress appropriately acts on their request, it could help jump-start the country's economic activity that saw a sizeable decrease since the start of the pandemic.

Tymon's letter concluded with acknowledging the positive effects produced in the FAST Act's extension but expressed worry that the stability it can create would be hurt if the states' DOTs cannot meet the infrastructure needs.

Read Jim Tymon's full letter here: https://policy.transportation.org/wp-content/uploads/sites/59/2020/10/2020-10-05-AASHTO-Letter-to-House-Leadership-on-State-DOT-Backstop-FINAL.pdf

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