U.S. Transportation Secretary announces $1 billion infrastructure boost

Published: Sep. 16, 2020 at 2:21 PM MDT
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WASHINGTON (Gray DC) -- Wednesday, the U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao announced a $1 billion infrastructure boost to communities across America.

There are 70 projects in 44 states, and half of these federal dollars will target rural areas. The funds are expected to go toward roads, bridges, transit, rail, ports, and other types of transportation projects.

“The Department of Transportation is constantly investing, reinvesting, repairing, and rebuilding the transportation infrastructure in this country, in partnership with state and local governments as well," said Chao.

Chao says this latest round of federal dollars focused on the needs of rural America due to these neighborhoods being historically underserved.

“We wanted to make sure that rural America was not overlooked, that it was not neglected, because once again, rural America forms an essential part of the transportation infrastructure of our country,” said Chao.

Although the Trump administration and House Democrats have been unable to strike a deal on approving a major comprehensive, bipartisan Congressional infrastructure package, Chao says there has been recent progress made on this critical issue.

“This latest $1 billion in BUILD grants came on top of about $36 billion that the president signed on March 27th in COVID assistance transportation infrastructure projects, so $36 billion dollars was given out basically in March, and we’ve since given out a number of another billion-dollar grant investment programs as well. So this administration remains very, very focused on transportation infrastructure, and we also want to address the long-neglected, overlooked needs of rural America as well," said Chao.

Chao says the funds will be distributed immediately and that partners at the state and local levels will begin putting these grant funds to use in the immediate future.

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