State highway agencies have taken the term “shovel-ready” to heart, so far devoting nearly half of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act dollars to pavement improvements, according to a recent report from the U.S Government Accountability Office. That information has drawn a mixed response in Congress. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman James Oberstar (D-Minn.) says the focus on such projects was expected. But Rep. John Mica (Fla.), the committee’s top Republican, wants to see more stimulus funds used for large projects. Source: GAO analysis of FHWA data Highway obligations by project type In another stimulus development, the U.S. Dept.