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Hawaii – Second Slowest State in Nation to Spend it’s Highway Stimulus Money

*According to the State’s submissions, as of June 30, 2009, 36.3 percent of Hawaii’s Recovery Act highway formula funds are out to bid, 0 percent of funds are under contract, and 0 percent of funds are underway.  Nationally, 48.8 percent of Recovery Act Highway formula funds are out to bid, 32.1 percent of funds are under contract, and 22.9 percent of funds are under way.

Media Release:

In letters sent today, (*edit*Letter to Lingle) Rep. James L. Oberstar (Minn.), Chairman of the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure has notified the three states that have best utilized highway funding under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (P. L. 111-5) (Recovery Act), and also notified the three worst-performing states. The rankings were based on State Progress Reports submitted by all 50 states and the District of Columbia to the Committee in July 2009.

“Our Committee has analyzed the percentage of Recovery Act highway formula funds that have been put out to bid, are under contract, and are underway. Over the past five months, most states have moved forward aggressively to use the highway funds to create and sustain family-wage jobs. According to our analysis, Wyoming has performed the best, with New Hampshire and Oklahoma close behind,” said Rep. Oberstar. “Unfortunately, a few states have fallen far behind in putting their Recovery Act highway formula funds to work. Florida has been the slowest state in utilizing its funding allocation, while Hawaii and South Carolina rank 50th and 49th respectively.”

As of June 30, Florida had begun construction of projects totaling only two percent of the state’s funding, while Wyoming had begun construction of projects totaling 76 percent of its funding allocation.

“I commend Wyoming and other high-performing states for investing Recovery Act funding quickly and efficiently. By moving swiftly and responsibly, those states have contributed to our nation’s long-term economic growth and are helping the United States recover from the worst recession since the Great Depression,” said Oberstar. “I also urge Florida, Hawaii, and South Carolina to refocus their efforts to implement the Recovery Act. As we move forward, our Committee will continue to require transparency and accountability information to ensure that taxpayers are getting the best bang for their buck.”

*http://transportation.house.gov/Media/file/ARRA/Worst%20States%208-6-09%20–%20Hawaii.pdf

UPDATE:

Thanks to Aaron over at the Kona Blog, he commented on Facebook and left this .pdf file of the States response to this allegation:

Lingle Response to Letter

One Response

  1. What the “H” Damon. I just went to the winhawaiinhome to see the winners(contest ended the 11th) and it is saying what they are planning to do next with the homr….”sell or rent”. Who the “H” won???? Please investigate and post.
    Thx

    Damon – The Big Island Chronicle is looking into this further.

    …Sherri Smith and John Williams of Win Hawaiian Home closed their essay contest in Puna. I am hoping to interview Sherri Smith in person in Pahoa tomorrow. I’d like to turn in to the Weekly a Win Hawaiian Home follow-up story in time for next week’s edition — to replace the story I had planned to write after meeting with Councilman Dennis “Fresh” Onishi…

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