LAURINBURG —State Sen. Tom McInnis said he expects several key road projects in Scotland County to be completed sooner as a result of major transportation funding reforms passed by the General Assembly in 2015.
According to the N.C. Department of Transportation, the accelerated projects include US 74 Rockingham-Hamlet Bypass in Richmond County to existing I-74 in Robeson County and upgrade corridor to interstate standards.
Those changes will be made long with Us 401 Business north 0f Laurinburg to US 401Business northeast of Raeford and widen to multilanes.
“We are now finally seeing some relief from the Great Recession in North Carolina. With the budget that we passed in the General Assembly that stopped the transfer of transportation funds to the general fund our rural area will now see new highway infrastructure construction,” McInnis said.”This is a welcomed change to the road systems in our rural counties.”
These local projects are among an additional 92 highway projects that will be built and another 90 existing projects that will be sped up statewide, due to a long-term, comprehensive plan for transportation funding lawmakers passed as part of this year’s state budget.
The plan added more than $700 million in new funding for transportation needs over two years. It also ended a decades-long raid of state transportation funds for non-transportation spending and helped ensure that 99 percent of those dollars will actually be used to build and maintain safe roads and bridges.
McInnis said thanks to the reforms, North Carolina will spend an additional $4.5 billion on new construction and maintenance priorities over the next 10 years – without having to borrow money.
The complete list of accelerated schedules for transportation projects will be presented to the state Board of Transportation for review at its December meeting, with approval expected in January 2016.