TRAC Votes to Accept Draft List
Launches Public Comment Period
COLUMBUS (Tuesday, January 31, 2012) –The Transportation Review Advisory Council (TRAC) today voted nine to zero to accept the draft list of the Ohio Department of Transportation’s (ODOT) major new transportation projects throughout the state. The TRAC vote launches a 45-day written public comment period as the state looks to adopt what ODOT Director and TRAC Chairman Jerry Wray describes as an “honest and fiscally responsible list of current and new construction projects."
“What we are doing right now is trying to provide communities with a realistic and honest look at the amount of money ODOT anticipates having in future years and balancing that with major new and important transportation construction projects throughout Ohio,” Wray said. “The result is that many projects are pushed back years and, in some cases, decades.”
For the next 45-days, written public comments may be sent to the following addresses: firstname.lastname@example.org, or to the Ohio Department of Transportation, C/O Jim Gates, 1980 West Broad Street, Columbus, Ohio 43223. Once the written public comment period concludes, the TRAC will decide if additional public hearings are needed, then proceed with a vote later this year to accept a final TRAC list. This is not the first time stakeholders have had an opportunity to support or oppose a TRAC project. Last fall, the TRAC heard from project advocates at four public, regional hearings held in Akron, Columbus, Cincinnati, and Toledo.
Today’s vote takes TRAC one step closer to wrapping up a year-long process of receiving and reviewing applications for major new transportation funding projects throughout the state. Last year, the TRAC received 72 applications for transportation projects totaling nearly $10 billion. Planning, design and construction of various phases of additional projects totaling $2 billion is already underway. However, ODOT estimates roughly $100 million per year to spend on new construction.
ODOT is funded completely with state and federal motor fuel tax. As inflation drives up the cost of construction materials, vehicles become more fuel efficient and fuel consumption decreases, TRAC revenue has shrunk over the past several years.
The nine-member TRAC was established by the Ohio Revised Code in 1997 and provides guidance for developing a project selection process for ODOT’s largest investments of more than $12 million.
For more information, contact: Steve Faulkner, ODOT Press Secretary, at 614-644-7101.