By Ana Martinez-Ortiz
Governor Tony Evers has been in office for approximately two weeks. In that time, he’s made several big announcements. As part of his job, in addition to making announcements and changes, Evers will help allocate money for certain industries and organizations in Wisconsin.
Last week, Evers announced “that local governments received quarterly payments this week totaling $118,205,118.” The money is all related to transportation and is from the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT). Some of the services utilizing the cash include General Transportation Aids and Expressway Policing Aids.
WisDOT released the exact amounts each sector will receive—1,924 local government units across the state will receive this money. General Transportation Aids will receive about $114,933,268. The Connecting Highway Aids will receive $3,015,874. And only 117 municipalities are “entitled” to receive that amount.
These payments will be made the first Monday of the month in January, April, July and October.
Milwaukee County will receive $255,975 for Expressway Policing Aid. These payments are expected to be made in January. However, it should be noted in 2019, “local governments will receive an estimated $473 million from the state transportation fund to build and maintain local roads and bridges.”
These payments will be occurring in January, July and October.
For anyone who lives in Milwaukee, this could be considered great news. It’s often noted in Milwaukee that even if it’s not snowing, highway construction is just as difficult to drive in. On top of the constructions, Milwaukee’s roads are covered in potholes that make it difficult to navigate the road for fear of a popped tire.
During his campaign, Evers noted that it was his intention to fix the potholes that were plaguing Milwaukee. He, like so many other Wisconsinites, often referred to the potholes as “Scott-holes” in reference to former governor Scott Walker.
While some of the money will be used to maintain the roads, some of the payments will go toward the Milwaukee County Sheriff Department which will be patrolling the highways.
As many know, it’s not uncommon to hear about a car accident on any given day in Milwaukee. Lately, drivers have taken to disregarding speed limits and road signals in favor of going fast or running through red lights. This behavior and disregard for the law has caused an increase in the number of accidents and deaths.
Although the county police officers will be patrolling the expressway, it’s possible that their presence will cause drivers to think twice before speeding both on the highway and off of it.
According to the press release, communities throughout Wisconsin will “also receive state transportation fund revenues for public transit, elderly and disabled transportation, and airport and harbor development.”
For a city like Milwaukee that relies on the bus lines to sustain its economy, its essential to receive funding. While all of this is general news, WisDOT has a list of local payments and projects on their website.