Home News-Free Louisiana to receive $76.2 million in federal highway dollars

Louisiana to receive $76.2 million in federal highway dollars

Hwy. 532 bridge over I-20 among projects to be funded

By David Jacobs | The Center Square

Louisiana will receive $76.2 million in previously budgeted federal highway dollars that other states were unable to use, Gov. John Bel Edwards said Friday.

The money will be used for the expansion of I-12 between U.S. 190 and LA 59 and on five bridge replacement projects around the state, the governor’s office says.

The department qualified for the additional federal funds after successfully allocating the full amount of its available federal funding to construction projects for the 2018-19 federal fiscal year and having the necessary matching dollars available, officials said.

The state ran a $308 million surplus last year and the Edwards administration expects to close the books on the last fiscal year with a similar amount of excess revenue.

“These funds will allow us to advance critical projects that have been previously identified in the area of maintenance, preservation, and capacity,” said Shawn Wilson, secretary of the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development. “As with previous redistributed funds, we have ensured these allocations will impact all areas across the state.”

The I-12 project will add a third lane in each direction and include new bridges over U.S. 190 and Ponchitolawa Creek/Tammany Trace, Edwards’ office says.  St. Tammany Parish is contributing $8 million to the project. 

The bridge projects to be funded include the following:

  • Bayou Boeuf Bridge on LA 106 in Avoyelles Parish
  • Creek Bridge on LA 507 in Red River Parish
  • Three bridges on LA 1042 east of Greensburg in St. Helena Parish
  • LA 532 bridge over I-20 in Webster Parish
  • Amite River Bridge on LA 16 near French Settlement in Livingston Parish

Each year the U.S. Department of Transportation redistributes federal funding from budgeted funds that were not used by other states or national programs to those states that successfully obligated their full federal highway funding allotment during the fiscal year, which is from October 1 through September 30. DOTD will use the new money on projects where the funds can be obligated before the end of the federal fiscal year and were included in the state’s Highway Priority Program, the governor’s office says.