YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – The infrastructure bill is over 1,000 pages and contains explanations for how much money would go to each program nationally, but there was no breakdown in the bill. Even a representative from one of our local congressmen admitted it.
Instead, rough estimates have been gleaned from formula funding used previously.
The State Street Bridge in Struthers has been standing a century. It still works, but who knows for how long.
The bridge was used as an example in September when Senator Sherrod Brown highlighted the Bridge Investment Act, which was added to the Infrastructure Bill.
Mahoning County has almost 300 bridges that will need repairs.
“This bridge alone is 121 years old and is the main thoroughfare getting into Struthers. There’s a lot of businesses that take this route. To ensure that this bridge is in the best condition it can be is very important,” said Mahoning County Engineer Pat Ginnetti.
The White House says commute times have increased by 5.7% in Ohio over the last 10-years, and each driver pays $506 per year driving on roads that need repair. The White House estimates Ohio could receive $9 billion in federal aid to fix highways and up to $483 million for fixing bridges over the next five years.
The American Society of Civil Engineers gave Ohio a C- grade on its infrastructure report card.
The bill also invests $7.5 billion to build a national network of electric vehicle chargers, and Ohio’s share could be $140 million.
Ohio is also projected to get $100 million for improving broadband access, 2% of Ohioans live where the FCC says there is not broadband infrastructure. Plus the state could get over $1 billion for public transportation and water infrastructure projects.
It’s to early to know how much money could make it to Ohio and to local communities. The package includes over $1.25 billion for the Appalachian Development Highway System, roughly $95 million of which would go to Ohio.