Lucas Meets with Grant County Commissioners to Discuss Transportation Issues

Congressman Frank Lucas discusses funding for the federal highway trust fund and other transportation issues with Grant County officials.  Pictured left to right: Commissioner Max Hess, Commissioner Cindy Bobbitt, Commissioner Jerry Shaffer, Congressman Lucas, County Clerk Sherri Eulberg and Legislative Assistant Jeremy Bennett.

Congressman Frank Lucas reviews bridge reports with Commissioner Cindy Bobbitt

Medford, OKCongressman Frank Lucas met Wednesday October 23 with Grant County Commissioners Cindy Bobbitt, Max Hess and Jerry Shaffer to discuss federal transportation issues. They toured a county bridge that was financed with 80% Federal Funds and 20% County Improvement Road and Bridge Funds (CIRB).  

In Oklahoma, counties own 75% of the state’s road miles and 62% of all Oklahoma’s bridges.  Of the seventy-seven counties in Oklahoma, Grant County has the highest number of bridges and fifth highest number of road miles.  Counties are invested in building and maintaining a safe, efficient transportation system that connects and serves our communities while allowing our nations’ economy to remain competitive in an increasingly global market.

Transportation funding from the federal government that flows to the states and down to counties comes from the Highway Trust Fund, which collects revenues from the federal gas tax.   Due to several factors, including a reduction in vehicle miles traveled, increased fuel efficiency and decreased purchasing power, the trust fund has faced growing shortfalls since 2008.

Commissioner Bobbitt urged Congressman Lucas to work with his colleagues in Congress during the “Lame Duck Session” to adopt a long-term sustainable revenue source for the Highway Trust Fund that will provide sufficient funding to fix and grow our nation’s transportation system.

The federal government is an important partner in delivering locally-developed transportation projects.  At the local level, we see the direct impact of federal dollars spent on transportation.   In addition to moving goods and people, federal transportation investments are major economic drivers for local communities.  If funding needs go unmet, county budgets are strained, projects are delayed and services are cut, and local economies suffer the consequences.