MoDOT earns federal funding with larger-than-expected revenues
From the Missouri Times
The Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) received enough unexpected revenue to continue to receive federal money, the department reported Friday.
Steven Miller, chairman of the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission (MHTC), wrote in a statement released July 24 that better economic conditions provided higher than anticipated revenue streams for the upcoming fiscal year, not only for MoDOT but for the entire state as well.
“This was a little surprising because in the recent past, MoDOT’s revenues have varied only slightly from projections, and some of those variances were negative rather than positive,” Miller said in the release. “… Occasionally there are anomalous years – this year was just such a year.”
Projections for statewide growth were short by 8.8 percent, and for funding related specifically to funding MoDOT, the projections were off by 4.5 percent. That low projection means that MODOT has $47 million more than anticipated.
Most of the $47 million will go towards ensuring that the state can meet its obligation to receive federal funds for the fiscal year 2017.
“MoDOT’s last financial forecast predicted that if nothing changed, we’d need approximately $42 million in state matching funds to avoid the loss of approximately $167 million in federal funds in 2017,” Miller wrote. “This revenue increase means MoDOT should be able to make its federal match in 2017.”
The amount of money seemingly found, just eclipsing the amount needed may seem miraculous, but Fay Fleming, the statewide communications director for the MHTC, warns not to put too much faith into the news.
“None of this is magical; it’s not mana from heaven,” she said. “It’s a way that revenue gets generated for transportation, and it moved up higher than the state of Missouri thought.”