FRANKFORT—The House voted Tuesday to approve a two-year state Road Plan and nearly $5 billion to fund the plans projects and state Transportation Cabinet operations and needs over the next two years.
The House voted 52-43 to approve House Bill 236, the funding bill that would pay for the $4.5 billion 2014-2016 Road Plan found in HB 237, which was amended and passed by the House by a 51-43 vote. HB 236 would also fund administrative and capital project needs of the Cabinet over the biennium.
Additionally, the House voted to pass House Joint Resolution 62 which includes the last four years of the state’s six-year road plan, or 2016 through 2020. That legislation passed the House on a 51-44 vote.
All three pieces of legislation are sponsored by House Appropriations and Revenue Committee Chairman Rep. Rick Rand, D-Bedford.
Of the road projects in the two-year Road Plan found in HB 237, Rand said $1.86 billion are state-funded and $2.7 billion are federal projects. Around $182 million of the projects in the Road Plan are projects backed by previously-authorized state bonds, Rand said.
House Transportation Budget Review Subcommittee Chair Rep. Leslie Combs, D-Pikeville, said the Road Plan includes several major projects, notably the Louisville bridges project, work on I-65 and the West Kentucky bridges projects, work on the Mountain Parkway, and work on the I-69 corridor.
There is no new debt in the road plan, Combs said. “It is all authorized in previous bienniums.”
House Minority Leader Rep. Jeff Hoover, R-Jamestown, expressed concerns over the planned allocation of transportation projects and said that the Road Plan had been brought up for a vote before all members had a chance to properly review it.
Hoover said the House Appropriations and Revenue Committee “had less than 15 minutes to look at a 200-and-20 some page bill, and take a vote. And now, a couple of hours later, we’re being asked on this floor to vote on this same bill that was amended by committee substitute.”
Hoover ultimately made a motion that HB 237 be “laid on the Clerk’s Desk,” which would have postponed a vote on the bill. That motion was defeated on a 46-51 vote.
Both HB 236 and 237 now go to the Senate, as does HJR 62.