Alaskans will spend less state highway cash on rest stops
and trails and more on the roads themselves under a bill signed into law
recently by Gov. Frank H. Murkowski.
SB71, proposed by Senate Majority Leader Ben Stevens, R-Anchorage, will compel the
state to spend no more than 10 percent of its federal highway money on such
amenities, according to the Legislature's Web site.
Federal laws "mandate that states expend at least 10
percent of federal Surface Transportation Program funds on enhancements such as
trails and landscaping," Sen. Stevens said in a statement. "Over the
past several years, the state of Alaska has expended amounts well beyond the
requirements for enhancements projects that could otherwise be applied to
roadway construction and improvement projects."
The law will become effective Oct. 1.
The Senate voted 11-7 in favor of the measure March
17; The House passed the bill by a vote of 26-2 on May 17. Murkowski signed it
into law Aug. 20.