Tom Warne Report, 15 June 2012
Structurally deficient bridges in Oklahoma will be reduced from 700 to nearly zero under legislation signed by Gov. Mary Fallin this week. HB 2248 includes an annual increase for a special fund for the Oklahoma Department of Transportation, from the current $41.7 million to $59.7 million. The fund which gets revenue from tax collections will continue to receive incremental increases of $18 million annually until it reaches a $575 million cap. The fund currently has $435 million.
The money will fund plans to repair nearly 170 deficient bridges on state highways by 2019.
She also signed a bill giving counties more funding for roads and bridges, increasing annually from $80 million to eventually $111 million. The money will come from an increase in motor vehicle fees, which will gradually increase from the current 15 percent to 20 percent by July 2014. The extra money will go toward counties reusing up to 1,800 bridge beams from the old elevated I-40 Crosstown Expressway in Oklahoma City. The beams will help build up to 300 county bridges.