The following points are intended to assist Economic Lifelines members in their conversations with policy makers and others about the importance of the T-WORKS program to the State of Kansas throughout the 2017 veto session.
What is T-WORKS?
The 10 Year T-WORKS program established in 2010, was designed to be an $8 B program focused on preserving the highway infrastructure, creating jobs, and providing multimodal economic development opportunities throughout Kansas. A promise of $8M was made to each county in Kansas to upgrade infrastructure needs. For more information about T-WORKS, click here to visit their Web site.
What is happening with T-WORKS now?
With more than $2.4 Billion diverted from the program to shore up other state agency budgets, the state can no longer accomplish the goals set-out under T-WORKS.
These cancelled projects put Kansas travelers’ safety at risk and don’t protect the investments made over the last 30 years to our state’s infrastructure system.
With historically low levels in funds available for state spending on preserving our road system scheduled for FY 18, the Kansas Department of Transportation must get needed relief to maintain our system in it’s current condition.
It is widely recognized that for each dollar in maintenance delayed it can cost up to $4-$5 dollars to repair a roadway that has not been properly maintained.
We must give KDOT a bridge to allow them to do the work critical to safety and preservation now so that we don’t create unnecessary expenses for the future.
What do we need to do today to begin to restore transportation funding?
A Bridge to Completing T-WORKS is available:
- We must allow the department bond additional money to address critical immediate needs.
- We must structure bonds to be fiscally sound – a short-term payback structure.
- We must make meaningful revenue policy changes that will create less reliance on the T-WORKS funding in the future.
- If we do nothing, our roads will quickly begin falling below good condition standards and it will cost more to bring them back to good condition.
- Travelers’ safety will be at risk by not completing the projects slated under T-WORKS
- No future infrastructure projects can be taken on by the agency, so the ability for businesses to move and grow in Kansas will be impacted negatively.