Budget Forces Maine To Defer Multiple Road, Bridge Projects
Rising costs will force the Maine Dept. of Transportation to cut multiple road and bridge projects from its $393-million work plan for 2019. Although the agency increased its construction cost estimates by 10%, bids for projects already advertised have routinely exceeded those amounts by as much as 60%. Several large new construction projects are expected to be set aside in favor of maintenance work, which is already underfunded by $108 million, according to the agency. Legislative proposals to increase the state’s fuel tax have so far encountered strong opposition.