St. Louis Public Radio News
8:12 am
Wed February 4, 2009

Mo. may get $500 million-plus in federal highway money

Jefferson City, MO – Missouri transportation officials continue to wait and see how much money President Obama's economic stimulus package may contain for the Show-me State's roads.

The exact amount of money Missouri may get from the economic stimulus package remains unknown.

But MoDOT Director Pete Rahn told reporters Wednesday that if the House of Representatives' version holds true, the state's transportation department would get more than half a billion dollars.

"It'll be spread out over a two-year period...the money will have to be spent within three years, or there's a claw-back provision in which the federal government would take monies not spent," Rahn said.

MoDOT has 34 construction projects ready to go if the federal money comes through.

Rahn says they would create about 14,000 jobs and carry an economic impact of more than $2 billion.

But State Representative Gary Dusenberg (R, Blue Springs) warns against depending on promises from Washington.

"Because we don't know for sure how much money we're going to get...there's no guarantee, and I don't think the people would want us to depend upon it, that's 'pie in the sky' right now...until we see the money coming to the state, we'll take that up at that time," Dusenberg said.