Five highway projects facing delays, Gov. Walker asks that $350M be set aside for transportation

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MADISON — Governor Scott Walker says he wants to work with Republican senators to find a solution to funding for road projects in Wisconsin that has led to a delay in some work.

Walker spoke to Republican state senators in the Capitol on Tuesday, October 6th.

He also voiced his support for replacing the nonpartisan Government Accountability Board with a bipartisan panel, banning the sale of aborted fetal tissue and overhauling the state’s 110-year-old civil service system.

Walker says he hopes at least “some portion” of $350 million set aside in the state budget for transportation projects can be tapped to continue road projects.

This, after a report by researchers at UW-Whitewater for the Transportation Development Association that suggests delaying several major highway projects in Wisconsin could end up costing taxpayers an extra $160 million, while delaying other economic benefits to residents and businesses that would benefit from the improved roads.

Walker’s Department of  Transportation last week announced it was delaying work on five major projects for two years.

Walker told senators at the Capitol Tuesday he’s willing to work with them on alternatives.

The budget passed this summer authorized $500 million in borrowing, with lawmakers reversing the option to authorize up to $350 million more over the next year.

Here is a list of the five major highway projects facing two-year delays, according to the Wisconsin Department of Transportation:

  • US 10/WIS 441 near Appleton
  •  I-39/90 (Madison to Illinois)
  • US 18/151 (Verona Road, Dane County)
  • WIS 15 (New London/Outagamie County)
  • WIS 23 (Fond du Lac and Sheboygan counties)

DOT officials tell FOX6 News the department prepares an updated financial report on the cost estimates for major highway projects twice each year. The next financial report will be available by February 2016.

Additionally, DOT officials say information is being pulled together on local project delays.

Monitor FOX6 News and FOX6Now.com for updates on this developing story.