The Missouri Department of Transportation has increased funding for its economic development costshare program. Planning Director Machelle Watkins says MoDOT can now match funds up to $45 million.
Press Release from the Missouri Department of Transportation
Communities Benefit From Addition of Funds to MoDOT Program
JEFFERSON CITY –During its March meeting, the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission made it easier for communities to advance a local transportation need or attract new employers by approving a $10 million increase to the Missouri Department of Transportation’s cost-share/economic development program.
Cities, counties and private developers can apply for these special MoDOT funds which, pooled with money they raise, pay for highway improvements.
“MoDOT’s cost-share program helps local communities ‘land the big fish,’” said Machelle Watkins, MoDOT’s Transportation Planning director. “The program regularly provides up to 50 percent of the costs for a project on the state highway system. If the Missouri Department of Economic Development verifies the addition of a significant number of jobs to the area, MoDOT could cover up to 100 percent through specially designated economic development dollars.”
While the community benefits by gaining an employer, the arrangement works to MoDOT’s advantage as well.
“Since the beginning of the cost-share program in 1998, we’ve allocated $379 million to cost-share projects,” said MoDOT Chief Engineer Dave Nichols. “In return, the state received $988 million worth of improvements because communities shared the project costs. That’s an outstanding return on our investment.
We’re also able to complete needed projects years earlier than would be possible if MoDOT paid the full cost.”
During the next five fiscal years, the cost-share budget ranges from $45 million to $52.5 million a year.
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