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Posts tagged VDOT.

as slow as molassesA recent blog post at ENR reviewed recent reports on the spending of transportation related stimulus funding.  The post analyzed a report by the House Transporation and Infrastructure Committee detailing where all the states stand on stimulus spending.  Readers may recall that back in March we discussed Virginia's lagging in spending its stimulus dollars.

Simply stated, the lagging definitely continues. While I generally avoid editorializing and engaging in much opining here as opposed to reporting and analyzing, this topic truly deserves a rant.

Dripping FaucetThe Commonwealth of Virginia has been slow to apply for, award and perform contracts funded by the federal American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA, better known as the Stimulus bill).  As the construction industry has suffered through plummeting bidding numbers and 25% national unemployment, Virginia has lagged in even qualifying its projects for funding, let alone getting the money to work.  The bad news is this has slowed down much needed funding.  The good news is it looks like there is a lot more money coming down the pike into the economy in Virginia.

A recent report by Peter Bacque of the Richmond Times Dispatch indicated that federal legislation provided $694.5 million in federal transportation stimulus funding and that less than half that has even been awarded in contracts.  Mr. Bacque indicates the money spent to date has produced 454.4 full time jobs.  This contrasts with the reported job creation in Virginia for US Department of Transportation which sets jobs created or saved at 1,335.54.  Thus, the confusion over job creation and funding that we have previously discussed continues.  Based on the funding numbers, the USDOT funding is clearly not the only agency source of transportation funding for Virginia as there is a minimum of another $100 million in funding.

NewspaperThere are a number of important construction law and economic developments that I want to pass along to our readers.  Given timing and the plethora of topics to address, I wanted to share these developments in a more rapid fire format so these updates remained timely.

The Virginia Department of Transportation and the Virginia Soil and Water Conservation Board are each respectively in the process of examining and issuing regulations impacting the development and construction industry.  The proposed VDOT regulations cover access management and relate to minor arterials, collectors, and local streets.  The public comment period began September 15, 2009 and is set to end on October 14, 2009.

The Soil and Water Board's stormwater regulations include significant amendments to stormwater management and were designed to address water quality and quantity and local stormwater management criteria.  Public comment ended on August 21, 2009 resulting in 408 comments.   The very significant level of commentary reflects a high degree of citizen and business interest and involvement.  The comments range from general but impassioned calls to defend the environment to quite a bit of substantive critical comments from design professionals, builders, and ordinary citizens regarding the regulations and their potential resulting economic impact.