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Friday, May 1, 2009

Brings Total Federal Stimulus Funding to
$27 Million for Projects
Governor David A. Paterson today announced he has recently certified an additional $7 million for transportation projects in the North Country through the federal American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). This critical funding will go toward much-needed highway and road repair, bridge span work and other long-term improvements to the region’s infrastructure and will create an estimated 168 jobs.Governor Paterson’s most recent $7 million certification, a requirement under ARRA provisions to ensure accountability and transparency of federal economic-recovery expenditures, brings to $27 million the total ARRA funding so far obligated for the North Country.“I want to thank President Obama and the entire New York State Congressional Delegation for their work to secure this crucial funding,” Governor Paterson said. “In funding these infrastructure projects we create jobs and make lasting improvements to roadways and bridges. These investments will get New York back on the road to economic recovery and headed toward a safer, more efficient future.”New York State Department of Transportation (DOT) Executive Deputy Commissioner Stanley Gee said: “These additional federal funds for highway and bridge improvements and preventative maintenance projects will help enhance safety and extend the useful life of the North Country’s transportation infrastructure. Governor Paterson is dedicated to using these key federal funds to create and maintain jobs that are essential to strengthening New York State’s economy.”Governor Paterson has recently certified $7 million in ARRA funding for projects in the North Country. Specifically, the projects include:
$3.6 million of ARRA funding for a project to clean and repaint nine state highway bridges in order to extend their useful service life. The project includes bridges carrying State Routes 22, 37, 37 C, 420 and 458 and U.S. Route 11 in Franklin, Clinton and St. Lawrence counties. The project is scheduled to be completed in late 2010.
$560,000 in ARRA funding for a project to reconstruct 1.5 miles of sidewalks and approximately 100 sidewalk ramps to bring them into compliance with federal Americans with Disabilities Act guidelines. Construction will focus on sidewalks and ramps in the Village of Massena and Hamlet of Madrid, St. Lawrence County, Village of Lowville, Lewis County, and Hamlet of Pierrepont Manor, Jefferson County. The project is scheduled to be completed in the summer of 2010.
$2.8 million in ARRA funding for a project to construct two new traffic lanes and enhance shoulders on Interstate 81 on Wellesley Island in the Town of Orleans, Jefferson County. The improvements will help expedite border crossing movements and enhance security at the Thousand Islands Bridge. The project is scheduled to be completed late 2009.
Earlier this month, Governor Paterson announced that in addition to the ARRA funding, the DOT will award $25 million in highway and bridge contracts this fiscal year and the North Country will also receive approximately $23 million in Consolidated Highway Improvement Program funding, which the recovery funds enabled us to restore to this level in the State budget. In total, the North Country will receive $82 million in highway and bridge funding in State Fiscal Year 2009-10.New York is expected to receive approximately $26.7 billion in ARRA funding over two years, which the White House estimates will create or retain 215,000 jobs. The economic recovery funds coming to New York for transportation projects must follow the same process required for distributing all federal transportation funds. The funds are allocated to projects that are selected by the 13 regional Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPO’s) across the State, which are comprised of local elected officials, local transit operators and members of the Department of Transportation. MPO’s vote unanimously on projects for their Transportation Improvement Program (TIP), and economic recovery funds will be directed to projects on those lists. Similarly, regions of New York without MPO’s are served by the State Department of Transportation, which consults with local elected officials and selects projects for the Statewide Transportation Improvement Program. The Department is working with local officials and the Governor’s Economic Recovery Cabinet to identify priority shovel-ready projects eligible for recovery funds.