Congressman G. K. Butterfield (NC-01) today sent a letter to North Carolina Department of Transportation Secretary Gene Conti urging reallocation of unspent transportation funds to the cities of Goldsboro and Havelock for transportation projects that can strengthen the economy and create jobs.
In his letter, Butterfield wrote, "It is my understanding that North Carolina has $703,634 in unspent transportation funds that are eligible to be redirected toward other projects. I urge you to consider reallocating those funds to the city of Goldsboro for the ongoing Center Street Streetscape and Union Station projects, and to the city of Havelock to expedite a flyover near Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point."
The full letter follows.
August 24, 2012
The Honorable Gene Conti
North Carolina Department of Transportation
1501 Mail Service Center
Raleigh, North Carolina 27699-1501
Dear Secretary Conti:
I write in support of President Obama's efforts to redirect $473 million in unspent highway funds to waiting transportation projects that can strengthen the economy and create jobs. Last week, the President announced the Administration would reallocate unspent highway funds from past appropriations bills. It is my understanding that North Carolina has $703,634 in unspent transportation funds that are eligible to be redirected toward other projects. I urge you to consider reallocating those funds to the City of Goldsboro for the ongoing Center Street Streetscape and Union Station projects, and to the city of Havelock to expedite a flyover near Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Cherry Point.
Since 2006, Goldsboro has promoted a bold plan to improve safety, strengthen infrastructure, and promote commerce, while also preserving critical historic and cultural landmarks. In March, I supported Goldsboro's request for an $11.2 million federal grant to make functional an aesthetic design improvement to the Center Street Streetscape project, and much needed upgrades to transform Goldsboro Union Station to a multimodal transit hub. Goldsboro has already invested approximately $2.5 million in the project to completely renovate downtown, expand public transportation capacity to interconnect an entire rural region, and restore historic infrastructure. A recent economic study indicates that the projects would also create or retain 691 jobs in an area facing 8.7 percent unemployment. Investing in Goldsboro will serve as a boost to the entire eastern North Carolina region during tough economic challenges.
In Havelock, the intersection of U.S. Highway 70 and Slocom Road poses a serious safety hazard due to heavy traffic flow from the back gate of MCAS Cherry Point and tourist traffic from the Crystal Coast. Havelock has proposed building a flyover to provide dedicated access to the base, and MCAS has already funded a required feasibility study. The critical infrastructure improvements sought by the city of Havelock will help the local economy by revamping the flow of people and commerce and will also improve military readiness and disaster preparedness.
Because of the economic advantages these projects will bring to the region, I ask for your full consideration in reallocating the unspent transportation funds to these vital projects. Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Dennis Sills on my staff at 202.225.3101.
Thank you very much.
Very truly yours,
G. K. Butterfield
Member of Congress