IDOT meetings on road plan are next week

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Illinois Transportation Secretary Gary Harmig recently announced that the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) will seek early input into the development of its upcoming Multi-Year Road Program for Highway Improvements for Fiscal Years 2012-2017 by hosting informational and feedback sessions in communities throughout the state.
The public meeting for the IDOT District #7 area, including the counties of Clark, Clay, Coles, Crawford, Cumberland, Edwards, Effingham, Fayette, Jasper, Lawrence, Macon, Moultrie, Richland, Shelby, Wabash and Wayne, will be held on Monday, from 4-7 p.m. at the Knights of Columbus Building, 1501 W. Fayette Ave., in Effingham, and next Thursday, from 4-7 p.m. at the Decatur Public Library Decatur Public Library, 130 N. Franklin St., Decatur,  in the Madden Auditorium, to give residents and businesses in the area a chance to better understand and weigh in on project priorities over the next five to seven years.
“With a robust construction season in full swing, we want to get an early start on our plans for our upcoming road program,” Hannig said. “It is important to us that we hear from the public about the projects that are important to their communities.”
The proposed Multi-Year Program (MYP) is based on conservative estimates of local, federal and state funding, including funding from Governor Pat Quinn’s “Illinois Jobs Now!” capital program, enacted in 2009. The Multi-Year Program for the current FY 2011-2016 totals about $12.84 billion and focuses on maintenance of the current road system.
The public meeting will be conducted on an informal basis and no formal presentation is planned. IDOT staff will be present to answer any questions related to the state highway program, planning and project development process.
The public will have an opportunity to comment on the development of the proposed MYP, existing programming procedures and other information. The meeting also will provide information to prospective contractors about programs in place to assist small business enterprises, including businesses owned and operated by minorities and women, and other programs undertaken by IDOT.
Comment sheets will be provided for those in attendance who wish to provide a written statement. Comments received at either meeting or sent to the District #7 Office by Nov. 1 will be included in the meeting record.