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Easley Signs 'N.C. Moving Ahead' Into Law

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RALEIGH, N.C. — Gov. Mike Easley on Thursday joined state Department of Transportation Secretary Lyndo Tippett, the state Board of Transportation, state legislators and other officials to sign into law

N.C. Moving Ahead!,

a two-year $700 million transportation and economic stimulus package.

Easley, who proposed the initiative in February, also announced the first round of the highway projects. He said the remainder will follow in the next few weeks.

The initial 28 projects, covering 28 counties, total $27,035,950 in costs. In all, nearly 800 road maintenance and improvement projects across the state will be done.


N.C.Moving Ahead!

will not only bring much-needed improvements to our state's transportation network, it also will revitalize our economy with a $4 billion impact and the creation of almost 30,000 jobs," Easley said. "The improved safety and mobility will help North Carolina attract new investments and even more jobs, benefiting our state for years to come.

"There can be no better legacy to our children and grandchildren than a strong economy and a transportation system that meets their needs."

The governor added that, "right now, we are looking at ways to accelerate projects in areas that have been affected by major layoffs to help generate critical jobs."

Under the program, the Department of Transportation will invest $630 million in highway preservation and modernization and $70 million in public transportation from the Highway Trust Fund's cash balances.

To ensure that qualified contractors receive the opportunity to participate in the work, the DOT will be working with the Minority Contractors Expansion Council and other outreach groups.

"On behalf of the citizens, I thank the General Assembly for their support of this landmark legislation," Easley said. "The economic stimulus benefits of this program could not come at a better time.


N.C. Moving Ahead!

projects will be located in all 100 counties across the state providing jobs to both large and small contractors and creating opportunities for working families."

In July, the General Assembly approved H.B. 48. Primary bill sponsors in the House included Reps. Jim Crawford and Nelson Cole, and the companion bill sponsor in the Senate was Sen. Wib Gulley.

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