ACROSS MISSISSIPPI — At a Recovery Act construction site outside Orlando, Fla., March 1, Vice President Joe Biden and U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood announced that every state and the District of Columbia met the March 2 Recovery Act deadline to “obligate” – or commit to specific projects – 100 percent of their highway Recovery funds.
According to figures from the U.S. Department of Transportation, 169 projects in Mississippi have been funded, and 68 are underway. The funds obligated to the state’s projects total approximately $354.56 million.
Every state met the target by February 26 and more than 30 of them did so at least a week ahead of schedule, putting a total of $26.6 billion to work on highway projects nationwide.
In just one year, funding from the Recovery Act has improved more than 33,000 miles of pavement across the United States. Of the more than 12,000 highway projects in all 50 states and the District of Columbia funded through the $26.6 billion Recovery Act investment in highway construction, almost 7,800 are underway – and activity on infrastructure projects like these is expected to ramp up even further this spring as the weather thaws and projects obligated over the winter break ground.
In addition, states around the country routinely received low bids that were 10 to 20 percent — and sometimes as much as 30 percent — below estimates. These lower than expected bids are allowing states to stretch taxpayer dollars, complete additional projects and create even more American jobs.