The N.C. Department of Transportation has a new, more efficient way of funding infrastructure investments that will better connect citizens to opportunities, increase jobs, and enhance economic development after Governor Pat McCrory signed into law today the Strategic Mobility Formula, House Bill 817.
"Everything we do is focused on strengthening our economy and making government operate more efficiently. This landmark legislation helps us do both," said Governor McCrory. "A tremendous amount of work has gone into this initiative, and I thank everyone from the statewide to the local level who has been involved with making it a reality. It is critical in changing the way we invest in transportation and do business in North Carolina. We will continue to work collaboratively as we move forward with implementing this new mobility formula and create more opportunities for communities throughout our state."
The new formula, which was sponsored by Reps. William Brawley, John Torbett, Frank Iler, Phil Shepard, and Sens. Kathy Harrington and Bill Rabon, is the first step in helping to address a decline in revenue and increase in the state's population by allowing NCDOT to more efficiently use its existing funds, which will result in more transportation projects and more jobs for North Carolina. The next steps, already underway, are to develop the 25 year plan and determine how to generate the revenue for infrastructure investment.
NCDOT will work closely with the N.C. Department of Commerce, local municipalities, and metro and regional planning organizations to identify projects that spur economic growth throughout the state through a new data-driven process.
"Our goal is to better connect people to jobs, health care, education, and recreation centers, as well as to maintain and attract new business," said Transportation Secretary Tony Tata. "The Strategic Mobility Formula allows us to make a stronger investment in our people and our state sooner by focusing on reducing congestion and travel time, while increasing economic competitiveness, freight and multimodal connectivity."
NCDOT's current 10-year plan includes 175 projects and creates 174,000 jobs. The new formula will fund at least 260 projects and create more than 240,000 jobs over the next 10 years.
The Strategic Mobility Formula replaces the state's outdated Equity Formula, which was implemented in 1989 and did not provide sufficient flexibility to meet North Carolina's current needs. The new formula takes a tiered approach to funding transportation improvements, with the statewide level receiving 40 percent of available funding ($6 billion), the regional level receiving 30 percent of available funding ($4.5 billion) and the division level also receiving 30 percent of available funding ($4.5 billion) over the next 10 years.
The new formula is scheduled to be fully implemented by July 1, 2015. Projects funded for construction before then will proceed as scheduled; projects slated after that time will be ranked and programmed according to the new formula.
For more information, visit www.ncdot.gov/strategicmobilityformula/.