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NC road-building costs could scale back long-term projects – Washington Daily News – Washington, District of Columbia

Washington, District of Columbia 2021-09-22 16:25:00 –

RALEIGH (AP) —According to a recent cost reassessment, the North Carolina government will need billions of dollars in additional road construction funding if it wants to carry out its currently planned project for the next decade.

WRAL-TV reports that the gap between the cost of a Ministry of Transport project and the available funds from 2024 to 2033 is at least $ 7 billion.

Highway projects may be removed or simply not added to the North Carolina Architectural Roadmap, State Traffic Improvement Program.

“That’s a problem,” Joey Hopkins, DOT’s deputy chief engineer for planning, told the station.
Increased project costs were counted during regular re-estimations during the COVID-19 pandemic. This contributes to rising material costs and an uncertain employment market. Real estate prices are also rising, and the cost of buying real estate to build and widen roads is rising.

“What we are currently dealing with in our market … The cost increases we are dealing with now are unprecedented,” Hopkins said. “Our right-of-way cost, the housing market, can seem to rise every day.”

According to Hopkins, DOT’s current cash balance is $ 2 billion and the division’s 12-month and 36-month contract grants should not be affected. In the long run, DOT says it is discussing expanding the project without eliminating it with local leaders throughout the state.

Almost all of DOT’s annual revenue comes from state and federal petrol taxes, a 3% tax on vehicle sales, and automobile sector charges. Long-life and fuel-efficient vehicles are affecting road revenues across the country, reducing sales tax revenues for gas and automobiles.

Cumulative available funding from 2024 to 2033 is currently estimated at $ 23.5 billion, according to a DOT presentation.

In January, the Blue Ribbon Commission recommended that North Carolina increase transportation costs by 40% to improve highways, rail and transportation. The commission said the state would need to find at least $ 2 billion a year to get there.

It will be politically difficult for Republican-controlled General Assembly and Democratic Governor Roy Cooper to approve more taxes and charges for transportation.

Senator Mike Woodard, a Democrat in Dallam County, said Overrun was “a sign of an old source of income.” “It’s clear that DOT’s earnings need to be modernized, which will be a heavy burden, but it’s a past time to roll up our sleeves.”

According to Hopkins, the State Transport Authority will probably not approve the next state transport improvement program until the summer of 2023. Some costs can sometimes go down.

“Once again, we have time to resolve this,” says Hopkins.

NC road-building costs could scale back long-term projects – Washington Daily News Source link NC road-building costs could scale back long-term projects – Washington Daily News

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