State Representative Ryan Spain, chief negotiator for the House Republican caucus on the State’s Rebuild Illinois Infrastructure Investment Plan, announced on Tuesday that more than $516 million in transportation infrastructure improvements are coming to the 73rd Legislative House District over the next six years from the Illinois Department of Transportation’s new Multi-Year Plan.
The projects are part of the new “Rebuild Illinois” plan made possible this year by the passage of the $45 billion capital bill on the final day of the spring session. Click here to view a comprehensive list of the 73rd District road and bridge projects.
“Nearly every area bridge over the Illinois River will receive attention under this infrastructure improvement plan,” said Spain. “Whether to get to our jobs or schools, or to transport what we grow and manufacture, we had no choice but to stem the tide of the systemic disinvestment in our transportation system in Illinois. The 73rd District will be supported with significant improvements that put our communities first, beginning with over $80 million in funds invested in District 73 in FY 2020.”
According to Spain, Illinois has not had a major capital and infrastructure package since 2009, and since that time roads and bridges have deteriorated to the point where some have become hazardous. “We have well over $30 billion in deferred maintenance of Illinois’ transportation network,” added Spain. “Many of us have had costly repairs to our automobiles because of poorly maintained roads, but the consequences of further inaction are far more dangerous than having to pay for a re-alignment or bent rim. The Route 18 Bridge in Henry will be fully replaced under this plan while major work on numerous Peoria bridges, the Illinois River Bridge in Lacon, as well as a bevy of interstate bridges and pavement projects will also be completed under this program.”
Within the District 73 allotment, an estimated $83,191,000 will be spent in FY 2020, with the remaining $433,597,000 slated for projects between 2021-2025. Spain is working with IDOT to take local officials concerns into account as these projects are coordinated to attempt to minimize impact on drivers as best as possible.
“Please keep in mind, as construction projects begin, these are “lockbox” projects putting your dollars to work for you,” Spain continued, referencing the Illinois Transportation Taxes and Fees Lockbox Amendment, passed by voters in November 2016. All transportation tax dollars are now required to be invested in infrastructure, to be enforced by the Courts, if necessary. This Lockbox Amendment protects all MFT funds from being used for non-transportation related purposes and helps to build trust with taxpayers to require dollars are going where they are intended — no matter which elected officials are in charge of state government.
The IDOT Multi-Year Plan is in addition to non-Lockbox projects submitted by legislators for Member Initiative Funding through other state agencies as part of other Capital Bill funding sources, like sports betting and gaming expansion. Announcements will be made on 73rd District Member Initiative projects by Representative Spain over the coming months. Cities & villages as well as counties in the 73rd District were asked to submit prioritized projects to Rep. Spain’s office for those funding opportunities beginning in December 2018 and given multiple opportunities for submissions until late Spring 2019. Those project requests were evaluated for compliance with the Government Accountability and Transparency Act (GATA) as well as meeting all other legal criteria for project submission.