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Congressional Bill Could Bring More Money for Oklahoma Roads

Oklahoma transportation officials are closely watching a funding bill moving through Congress.

The measure by Senator Jim Inhofe has the potential to bring the Oklahoma Department of Transportation $4.2 billion dollars over five years – an increase of $100 million more than 2015.

ODOT Director Tim Gatz says there’s even more to the bill for Oklahomans to celebrate.

“The bill, if I had one word to describe it, it’s flexibility," said Gatz. "It really provides the department with flexibility across a lot of different modes of transportation. That will empower us to make good decisions about where our investments go.”

The legislation passed out of the Environment and Public Works Committee and is awaiting a hearing on the Senate floor, so Gatz says it still has a long way to go.

The bill also requires a funding mechanism which will come out of a different committee.

Gatz says, as far as he knows, the Transportation funding measure has the support of President Trump, so he says he’s excited to see it moving so fast.

Copyright 2019 KOSU

Michael Cross has been with KOSU since 2008, working as the state capitol bureau chief for seven years, as well as KOSU's student coordinator. While he still keeps up with the capitol and does some reporting, his roles have changed. As of October 2014, he's now the host of KOSU's Morning Edition.