Senator seeks ways to bolster road and bridge projects at state and federal level
Washington – Focusing on ways to continue boosting jobs and improving Missouri’s roads and bridges, U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill recently met with Missouri transportation officials to discuss ways to meet Missouri’s future transportation needs in light of budget constraints in Washington and Jefferson City.
McCaskill’s meeting included Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) Director Dave Nichols, as well as Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission Chairman Joe Carmichel and Vice Chairman Steve Miller.
“We are facing a real crisis if we can’t find a way to come together at the federal and state levels to build and maintain our roads and bridges that are so important to Missouri’s economic future,” said McCaskill, a member of the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee.
“We can’t afford to ignore this critical need. Not only will these investments make our roads safer, but they will also lead to a more robust economy by creating jobs and enhancing business opportunities across the state.”
With 33,702 miles of highway, Missouri has the nation’s seventh largest state highway system, with more miles than Iowa, Nebraska and Kansas’ systems combined.
The state also has more bridges longer than 1,000 feet than any other state.
MoDOT estimates the agency will need an additional $1 billion per year for 20 years to protect and build on the investment Missourians have already made in their roads and bridges.
McCaskill has worked with Republican colleagues including Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) to write the Federal Permitting Improvement Act, to cut through federal red tape and expedite job-creating infrastructure projects.
She has also joined with a bipartisan group of Senators, including Republican Missouri Senator Roy Blunt, to introduce the Building and Renewing Infrastructure for Development and Growth in Employment (BRIDGE) Act, which would create a federal infrastructure bank to help finance infrastructure projects.