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Gov. Whitman Makes Safe Roads, Bridges Top Priority in NJ With $150M Grant

Wed December 06, 2000 - Northeast Edition
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New Jersey Governor Christie Whitman signed legislation that will provide grants to county governments to repair local bridges and support various transportation projects statewide. Part of a 1999 ballot question approved by voters, the $150 million will help keep New Jersey’s transportation system safe for drivers.

Whitman signed the bill at the Alexander Road Bridge in West Windsor, NJ. Alexander Road is a two-lane bridge built in 1941. A main access to the Princeton Junction train station, the bridge must be repaired and modernized to meet Amtrak height requirements and possibly realigned to improve safety on the road.

“This legislation speaks to the importance of improving our transportation system. Our bridges and roads are critical to our future,” Whitman said. “If they don’t work, we don’t get to work. It’s that simple. I often say that my main goal as governor is to make New Jersey an even better place to live, work and raise a family. I would like to add commute to that list. With this funding, it will be all of the above.”

A-2587, sponsored by Assemblymen DeCroce (R-Essex/Morris/Passaic) and Bodine (R-Atlantic/Burlington/Camden) and Senators Ciesla (R-Monmouth/Ocean) and Allen (R-Burlington/Camden), appropriates $150 million from the 1999 Statewide Transportation and Local Bridge Fund. Of the $150 million, $25 million is set aside for grants for county governments to repair or rebuild structurally deficient bridges that carry county or municipal roads — local projects. The remaining $125 million is allocated for various statewide Department of Transportation (DOT) projects.

The 1999 Fund authorizes $250 million for local projects and $250 million for statewide DOT projects. Before the current appropriation, $125 million had been appropriated for local projects and $80 million for state projects. This legislation now brings those totals to $150 million and $205 million respectively.

Voters approved the Statewide Transportation and Local Bridge fund last November.

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