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planning documents: Capital Work Plan for FY 2012-2013
Home > Commissioner's Letter
MaineDOT Commissioner's Letter in regards to the Capital Work Plan, FY 2012-2013
Dear Maine Travelers:
The Maine Department of Transportation (MaineDOT) is pleased to present this $764.6 million Capital Work Plan (Work Plan) for the FY 2012-FY 2013 biennium (July 2011-June 2013). This Work Plan contains projections of capital transportation resources (federal, state, other) and MaineDOT’s strategy to apply them to the design and construction of transportation infrastructure of all modes throughout the state. As you will see, the Work Plan invests $688.7 million in highways and bridges and $75.9 million in capital multimodal projects including aviation, industrial rail access, small harbors, transit, and pedestrian facilities. Though not capital in nature, Appendix A also lists $46.4 million in multimodal operational funding that has been included in previous biennial work plans. This plan does not rely on legislative authorization of any additional bonding.
This truly is a “Work” plan in that over 80% of MaineDOT's capital funding supports private sector jobs in the form of construction contracts, consultant services, private equipment rental and construction materials. It will create, sustain and support over 21,000 jobs based on federal estimates.
As you will see, this Work Plan calls for delivery of the following highway and bridge improvements located throughout the state.
Although projected total capital investment is slightly less than the FY 10-FY11 biennium (largely due to previous extraordinary bonding levels), this Work Plan maintains core programs, leverages all anticipated federal funding, and will keep our existing transportation system serviceable for this biennium. Further, utilizing practical design standards that match the priority and use of the road, this Work Plan will stretch funding to achieve more miles of improvement. For example, though planned funding for highway reconstruction is projected to be about 5% less than actual amounts for the current biennium, we estimate that we can reconstruct about 19% more miles. Further, while this Work Plan predictably reduces bridge funding by about 22% as the extraordinary bridge funding program authorized by P.L. 2009, Ch 647 winds down, it targets this funding such that bridge preservation investment is projected to increase 61.5%.
Predicting funding levels has proved difficult in recent years. Continuing global financial challenges exacerbated by rising fuel costs will likely affect both state and federal transportation motor fuel-tax revenue as people drive less and switch to more fuel efficient vehicles. Moreover, broader budget and debt level debates in Congress make predicting federal transportation funding very difficult. The last multiyear federal transportation funding authorization expired in 2009. Instead, Maine and all states are currently receiving funding month by month via continuing resolutions (CR) as Congress and the President continue to work on future transportation funding policy. Possible federal funding outcomes under deliberation range from a reduction of 50% to an increase of 25%. This Work Plan assumes flat federal transportation funding based upon current CR levels.
Further, in addition to traditional state Highway Fund sources, planned funding also includes a $20 million General Fund appropriation. Obviously, if actual resources over the next two years differ significantly from projections, MaineDOT will be required to make adjustments to this Work Plan to fit within existing resources.
Just as differing funding levels could require adjustments to this Work Plan, differing costs due to market forces and efficiency savings can alter this plan. Recent bids received are currently under estimates, but increases in the cost of asphalt are possible. We plan to work with the private sector and MaineDOT staff to find ways to stretch every transportation dollar as far as possible. Efficiency savings, municipal and other partnerships, practical design standards, streamlining of environmental and permitting processes, and other innovations could lead to additional projects.
Regarding the project selection process, this Work Plan uses better tools to perform MaineDOT’s on-going task of prioritizing scarce resources. As is described more fully in section III of the narrative below, this plan uses common-sense and fact-based Highway Corridor Priorities (HCP) and realistic, engineering-based, and uniform Customer Service Levels (CSL’s) to focus investments on projects that have the most traveler and economic benefits.
Though funding constraints and overall customer needs have required a focus on the highway and bridge system, this Work Plan also includes $75.9 million multimodal capital program that matches all federal funds and leverages additional funding through partnerships. Further, $46.4 million in multimodal operational funding is provided.
In closing, MaineDOT commits to you that we will implement this Work Plan in accordance with our core values of integrity, competence, and service. If you have any questions, we will be pleased to answer them. Thank you for your ongoing support; it allows us to do this critical work for the people of Maine.
This page last updated on 4/13/11
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