Massachusetts legislature approves $11.3 billion transportation bond bill

August 5, 2022

Keith Goble

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The Massachusetts legislature has approved an $11.3 billion transportation bond bill. The plan calls for tapping federal aid and state surplus revenue.

Both statehouse chambers voted unanimously to send the bill, H5151, to Gov. Charlie Baker after a compromise committee made up of select members from the House and Senate reached agreement on provisions. The deal authorizes major investments for roads and bridges, and transit.

Additionally, state lawmakers included $400 million for the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority to address safety concerns identified by the federal government.

Senate President Karen Spilka, D-Ashland, said the 99-page bill has far-reaching benefits for the state’s infrastructure.

“Not only does this bill fund much-needed transportation repairs for all modes and communities, but it also goes much further to invest in infrastructure that is more modern, environmentally sustainable, and regionally equitable,” Spilka said in a news release.

The plan calls for leveraging state surplus and federal pandemic relief funds to pursue federal funds via the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, a five-year federal transportation funding bill that provides record federal funding to states.

The federal law also permits Massachusetts to apply for about $2.5 billion in grants for local road repairs and other infrastructure improvements.

Sen. Brendan Crighton, D-Lynn, added that the bill provides the state with the key to unlock “once-in-a-generation federal funding.”

“With these combined state and federal investments, we will be able to complete vital work on our highways, roads, bridges and public transportation systems, improving mobility for all residents of the commonwealth.”

The breakdown of the bond authorizations includes the following:

  • $3.5 billion for discretionary federal grant projects.
  • $2.8 billion for federal highway systems projects.
  • $1.375 billion for transit systems.
  • $1.27 billion for non-federally aided roads and bridges.
  • $920 million for local transportation projects.
  • $85 million for state-numbered routes road pavement projects.
  • $25 million for municipal road pavement improvements.

The bill headed to the governor’s desk can be signed, vetoed, or amended. LL

More Land Line coverage of news from Massachusetts.

 

Keith Goble has been covering trucking-related laws since 2000. His daily web reports, radio news and “OOIDA’s State Watch” in Land Line Magazine are the industry’s premier sources for information regarding state legislative affairs.