JACKSON — Mississippi Department of Transportation (MDOT) officials say they are grateful for the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA). The first year of this funding program has had an enormous impact on Mississippi and the nation as a whole in providing jobs and in allowing critical transportation projects and improvements to move forward, according to MDOT.
Larry L. “Butch” Brown, MDOT executive director and American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) president said, “The impact and importance of the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act has been invaluable — both for Mississippi and for all the states across the country. One year ago, the enactment provided the stepping stone we needed to move forward and build good transportation projects while creating jobs that may have gone by the way-side had it not been for the ARRA funding.
“The stimulus Mississippi received came just at a time when the economy was slowing down and our construction contracts were running out because we were out of dollars. We are proud of the work we have done over the past 12 months — and we are ready and more than able to continue to get the job done.”
Under the Recovery Act, nationwide more than 280,000 jobs were created and more than 12,250 transportation projects are underway as a result of the jobs bill signed into law one year ago.
MDOT received $355 million as part of the federal ARRA highway funding. As of January 2010, $338 million has been obligated. Because of the ARRA funding, MDOT has made improvements to miles of highways across the state, some bridges have been improved and replaced, and several enhancement projects and safety projects have also benefited from the funding.