UDOT Meets Federal Stimulus Obligation Deadline 15 Weeks Ahead of Schedule

Wed Mar 18, 2009 10:30am EDT

* Reuters is not responsible for the content in this press release.

SALT LAKE CITY--(Business Wire)--
Sixty-four percent of UDOT`s 56 federally-funded highway stimulus projects,
equaling $96.5 million of the $149.5 million allocated to Utah, have been
obligated in just two weeks. 

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), signed by President Barack
Obama on Feb. 17, requires all states to have at least 50 percent of their
federal stimulus funds obligated within 120 days of March 3 (when funding became
available) and all stimulus projects obligated within one year. ARRA also
requires all projects to be completed within three years. 

The remaining projects will be obligated by the end of May, making UDOT one of
the first in the country to have 100 percent of its projects ready to be
advertised to the contractor community. 

Timely federal obligation is a significant milestone toward completing all of
UDOT`s ARRA projects by the end of the year, a challenge issued by UDOT
officials. UDOT`s aggressive timeline will allow projects to be started and
completed quickly and ensure that federal funds target all four corners of the
state to more effectively generate and support jobs and help Utah`s overall

As part of the obligation process, UDOT must submit environmental documents,
project specs, cost estimates, certifications and proof of right-of-way
ownership. Each project is then reviewed by the Federal Highway Administration
(FHWA) and authorization is either granted or denied. 

Once FHWA has obligated a project, the state can begin to advertise it among
contractors and prepare for construction. Since transportation funds are under
tight scrutiny, states that are unable to meet federal guidelines stand to lose
the remaining funds not obligated by the federal government and those dollars
will be reappropriated to states that met the requirements. 

UDOT`s 56 ARRA projects are designed to maintain pavement conditions,
rehabilitate and repair existing bridges and improve capacity along Utah
highways. Additionally, UDOT`s ARRA projects would not have been funded
otherwise this year. 

Nile Easton
Office: 801-965-4387
Cellular: 801-673-7107
Pager: 801-241-3245 

Copyright Business Wire 2009