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U.S. Department of Transportation, Office of Public Affairs, Washington, D.C., www.dot.gov/affairs/briefing.htm - News

FHWA 37-11
Wednesday, August 17, 2011
Contact: Kelly Hanahan
Tel: 202-366-0660

U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood Announces $4.2 Million in Grants for Vermont Highway Projects

Funds will help create jobs by constructing rest areas, repaving roads and installing safety improvements at rail crossings

WASHINGTON – U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood today announced more than $4.2 million in grants for Vermont to fund an array of highway-related efforts ranging from protecting rail crossings to transportation job training.

"Transportation investments like these will create jobs and improve the quality of life for Vermont residents as well as strengthen the state's economy," said Secretary LaHood. "The demand from the states for these funds shows just how critical the need is for infrastructure investment."

The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) invited states to apply in June for federal funding from 14 grant programs. Requests poured in from every state, Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C. – more than 1,800 applications, totaling nearly $13 billion, which is more than 30 times the funds available.

"At a time when states are facing serious budgetary constraints, these grants will help fill a critical need," said Federal Highway Administrator Victor Mendez. "Investments like these are immediate and long-lasting and will help create jobs."

Congress created the discretionary grant programs to give FHWA the latitude to support projects that maintain the nation's roads and bridges, improve roadway safety and make communities more livable. In previous years, Congress designated some of this grant money for specific projects and FHWA awarded the remainder through a competitive process. Because the FY11 budget passed by Congress last April directed that all such funds be discretionary, FHWA awarded these funds through a competitive process.

Vermont received funding for the following projects:

Installing active protection at 15 unprotected crossings on Amtrak's Vermonter route $2,248,687
Using warm mix asphalt, Safety Edge and intelligent compaction on US 4A and VT 30 in Castleton $1,000,000
Improving access at the St. Johnsbury Waypoint $352,000
Supporting the Chittenden County travel demand management pilot program $326,100
Providing comprehensive pre-employment training, case management and job placement to disadvantaged groups $200,025
Providing comprehensive business development training to increase the capacity of VTrans Disadvantaged Business Enterprise firms $75,000
Constructing four bicyclist rest areas on the Lake Champlain Byways $52,800
Installing interpretive panels along the Green Mountain Byway $41,625
TOTAL $4,296,237

A complete state-by-state list of this year's grant recipients is available online at https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/pressroom/fhwa1137/.

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