“The TPC meeting can play an important role in fostering stronger communication between the Legislature, transportation stakeholders, my administration and the public about major highway projects,” said Governor Tony Evers, who chairs the commission.
The TPC, consisting of a bipartisan group of legislators and three citizen members, approved removing three Major Highway Project studies at this time.
“In order to make the best use of the citizens’ tax dollars, it is imperative that we are deliberative and look at what the emerging needs are, prioritize how we state the projects to achieve the greatest value and plan for how they can be funded,” said Secretary-Designee Craig Thompson. “This type of planning and staging can be the most important efficiency that we can provide to the taxpaying public.”
The studies that were removed are:
Major Highway Project candidates undergo an extensive, statutorily-set evaluation that considers a project’s potential to enhance economic development, relieve traffic congestion, improve safety and achieve community objectives while minimizing environmental impacts. To move forward, candidate projects must undergo an environmental review process. State law prohibits the TPC from recommending Major Highway Projects unless funding is sufficient to begin construction within six years.
The TPC is a public/private commission that includes the Governor, five state senators, five assembly representatives and three citizen members who review, approve and make recommendations regarding Major Highway Projects in Wisconsin.
The 2011-13 state budget revised the definition of a Major Highway Project as a project that has a total cost of more than $30 million and involves at least one of the following:
State law also specifies that any project with a total cost of over $75 million can also qualify as a Major Highway Project.