Road conditions in our district have a direct effect on future economic growth. Current language in the 2018 Illinois Budget Bill will cut the amount of Motor Fuel Tax dollars allocated to counties and will transfer costs for transit activities as well as, Series D bonds from the general fund to transportation funds.
$303 million dollars were transferred this fiscal year. Of that $303 million, IDOT chose to take $50 million from local agencies; leaving the remaining $253 million to come from IDOT construction projects. A few of the local county funds negatively impacted by this include; County Consolidated Fund, Needy Township Fund, and the Park Access Road fund.
The direct effect on Stephenson County alone is a loss of approximately $83,500 from the Consolidated Fund and $39,000 from the Needy Township Fund. The $83,500 was almost the entire cost of the bituminous material used in the county’s pavement preservation program in 2017. These dollars are being transferred to the Northeastern part of the state with no requirement for the transit systems to reduce spending.
Thus, rural counties like those in the 89th district are having to cover borrowing costs and operational cost of transit systems from which they get no benefit. This has to change! Taking dollars from rural roads has a serious negative impact on current businesses in the district as well as slowing expansion of growing companies.