Bill to speed up transportation projects signed

Trenton. Gov. Phil Murphy signs bill to improve efficiency in getting Transportation Trust Fund projects approved.

05 Aug 2019 | 04:33

Gov. Phil Murphy signed legislation improving the efficiency and costs of Transportation Trust Fund projects and creating a research center in the Department of Transportation.

Assemblymen Anthony M. Bucco and Hal Wirths, sponsors of the bill, said the new law will reduce delays in planning and bidding and save money.

“This legislation will broaden the impact of trust fund spending and provide significant savings for our taxpayers well into the future,” said Bucco (R-Morris). “If we are going to improve our failing infrastructure, the state must do a better job with the TTF money.”

The American Society of Civil Engineers gave New Jersey’s infrastructure a D+ in their 2016 report card. Almost 9 percent of bridges in the state were designated as structurally deficient, and more than 40 percent of roads were deficient.

The law requires the DOT to collaborate with counties to create a priority list of highway projects based on the availability of funds. It also permits the bundling of projects funded in part or completely through TTF. Projects that are similar in size and scope could be included under a single contract, which would expedite approvals, control costs and get projects moving.