PHOENIX – The Arizona Department of Transportation will hold its third and final public hearing for the 2015-2019 Tentative Five-Year Transportation Facilities Construction Program next week in Flagstaff in order to gather comments from the public and communities on the direction of the program over the next five years.
The meeting is scheduled for 9 a.m. on May 9 in the City of Flagstaff Council Chambers, 211 W. Aspen Ave. in Flagstaff. The monthly State Transportation Board meeting will follow the public hearing.
The 2015-2019 Tentative Five-Year Program is available for public review at azdot.gov/fiveyearprogram. Comments can be submitted until May 20 online or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Five-Year Program is updated every year and serves as a blueprint that details where, when and how regional, state and federal funding will be spent for projects over the next five years to improve the state’s transportation infrastructure. This includes highways, bridges, transit and aviation.
Much like the current Five-Year Program, the 2015-2019 Tentative Five-Year Program reflects a major focus on preserving the existing state highway system to keep it in good repair, while moving some programmed projects forward. ADOT must prioritize projects due to stagnant revenue from the gas and vehicle license taxes and from decreased federal funding — all of which support the Five-Year Program. Last year, ADOT cut $350 million from the 2014-2018 Five-Year Program because of substantially decreased revenue dedicated to transportation. No additional funding cuts are forecast for the 2015-2019 Five-Year Program; however, overall state and federal transportation funding continues to be flat.
The 2015-2019 Tentative Five-Year Program includes a three percent increase in preservation spending over the 2014-2018 Program, with a steady increase in preservation funding over the next 10 years. Preserving the system means protecting our investment of $18.4 billion, the estimated value of the state highway system. The funding for the 2015-2019 Tentative Five-Year Program looks like this:
- Greater Arizona: $1.8 billion over five years (60 percent for preservation, 11 percent for expansion and 29 percent for modernization)
- Maricopa County region: $1.7 billion over five years
- Pima County region: $349 million over five years
- Aviation: $1.1 billion over five years
Both the Maricopa and Pima county regions have independent revenue streams established through voter-approved sales tax increases.
The State Transportation Board will consider all public comments received by May 20. The board is expected to adopt the final 2015-2019 Five-Year Program at the June 13 meeting in Willcox. The meeting will be held at 9 a.m. in the City of Willcox Council Chambers, 300 W. Rex Allen Drive in Willcox.