Walden Helps Secure Funds For Repairs To State Roads, Including Highway 35
U.S. Congressman Greg Walden (R-OR) today praised a $30.8 million allocation in Emergency Relief (ER) funds from the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) for emergency repairs to Oregon highways damaged during the storms of November 2006. On November 9, 2006, immediately following the severe storms, Walden toured the sites of destruction around Mt. Hood to assess emergency and long-term needs and how the federal government could best help.
"The federal government has responded to the siren call from Oregon's Congressional delegation and state and local leaders and is stepping up to the plate to help keep the state's roads safe and reliable," Walden said. "The Oregon Department of Transportation and their partners pulled off an amazing feat in quickly reopening Highway 35, but the continual problems on the highway demand serious attention and serious solutions and this federal assistance should be a great start."
The roads targeted for the funding include U.S. 101, U.S. 26, and Oregon State Routes 6, 35, 47, and 53. Part of the money will help pay for a permanent solution to Highway 35's vulnerability to washouts.
Following his tour of the destruction, Walden wrote a letter to DOT and the Federal Emergency Management Agency in December asking that ER funds be used to construct a long-term solution for Highway 35. Walden also co-signed a letter from the entire Oregon Congressional delegation in late January that asked the Federal Highway Administration for ER funds for repairs to Oregon highways damaged by the storm.
Last year, the House passed legislation the Mt. Hood Stewardship Legacy Act backed by Walden and Congressman Earl Blumenauer that addressed transportation issues in the Mt. Hood area.
Congressman Walden represents 20 counties in central, southern and eastern Oregon. He is a deputy whip in the House Leadership Structure and a member of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce.