Oklahoma Department of Transportation cutting additional $17.6 million from budget

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OKLAHOMA CITY - Oklahoma Department of Transportation Commissioners voted at their Monday meeting to reduce Capital Projects from the ROADS Fund by $17.6 million.

It’s a move they were forced to take after the second declaration of the state’s current year revenue failure.

They have now reduced the current year’s budget by more than $30 million.

And, commissioners were warned it could get worse.

“Further reductions may occur before June 30, 2016 if revenues continue to decline,” said Chelley Hilmes with the ODOT Comptroller Division.

“At some point during this year, we’re going to have to delay projects,” said ODOT Executive Director Mike Patterson.

Patterson said ongoing projects should not be affected, but future ones could, including a couple major ones in the metro area that are badly needed – the revamping of the I-235 & I-44 and I-35 & I-240 interchanges.

Patterson said they will continue the push to fix all structurally deficient bridges in our state, but then repaving projects and certain safety concerns might get pushed back.

“It’s the safety that we have so many highways with no paved shoulders where people are running off the side of the highway, dropping that wheel off the edge,” Patterson said.

ODOT officials said they could know later this month which projects might be delayed.

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