West Virginia lawmakers approve money for road work

September 13, 2022

Keith Goble

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Road work in West Virginia received a boost Monday at the statehouse.

Gov. Jim Justice over the weekend issued a proclamation calling for a special session on Monday to address economic policy and road work. The announcement came as legislators already were scheduled to be in Charleston for regularly scheduled interim committee meetings.

As a result, state lawmakers met Monday long enough to pass two bills to boost highway funding.

The purpose of the legislation is to route unappropriated 2021 surplus revenue from the state’s general fund to the Department of Transportation’s Division of Highways.

The first bill, SB4002, would take advantage of the state’s budget surplus to pay for upgrades to secondary roads around the state. The bill transfers $150 million for maintenance work.

The second bill, SB4003, specifies that $125 million would be used for projects and $25 million would be allotted for equipment.

The West Virginia Department of Transportation says nearly 500 paving projects remain for the year. The projects represent nearly 800 miles of work.

More than 29,000 projects have been completed so far this year.

Both bills now move to the governor’s desk for his signature.

More attention to roads

Yesterday’s action at the statehouse marks the second time in as many years that state lawmakers approved legislation that uses money available to the state to boost transportation funding.

The governor called a special session in July 2021 to address the need to tap a surplus to aid transportation projects.

House and Senate lawmakers approved legislation to authorize $150 million in additional road work funding for the state’s Division of Highways.

The money was transferred from the state’s General Revenue Fund to the Road Fund.

Justice said at the time passage of the legislation allows the state to complete 402 secondary road projects in all 55 counties. Road work included 742 miles of road repaving and repairs to 40 bridges. LL

More Land Line coverage of news from West Virginia is available.

 

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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.