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Tue August 01, 2017 - National Edition
The Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department announced that it will change its name to the Arkansas Department of Transportation (ArDOT), effective immediately.
The name was changed in the 128-page Senate Bill 589, which served as a recommendation of the Legislative Task Force on Intermodal Transportation and Commerce. According to ArDOT, the bill's length was due to the need to change the department's name in every location that it appeared in the Arkansas Code.
While the Task Force considered combining the Arkansas Department of Aeronautics and the Arkansas Waterways Commission with the Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department, it ultimately decided not to do so.
However, ArDOT said the Task Force did recommend changing the department's name for reasons that included:
• Bringing the department into the mainstream of the majority of transportation departments throughout the country.
• Aligning the department with language used in Federal law that refers to the various "Departments of Transportation."
• Identifying the department as the point of contact for purposes of economic development in conjunction with the state's Aeronautics Department and Waterways Commission.
ArDOT Director Scott Bennett said, "We are the backbone of economic development in the state and nothing makes job creation more possible than the work we do."
Not the First Time for a Change
The department's name has not been changed since 1977, when it became the Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department. Before that, it had been known as the Arkansas Highway Department, the name it received when it separated from the State Department of Lands in 1929.
Regardless of the department's name, its values still remain unchanged, according to Bennett, who said, "Although we have a new name, we still have the same commitment to safety, efficiency, quality and trust."
For more information, visit www.arkansashighways.com.