WASHINGTON, DC – Today, U.S. Senator Tom Carper (D-Del.), top Democrat on the Environment and Public Works Committee, raised concerns over the lack of federal grants awarded to Northeast states following the Department of Transportation’s grant announcements. The agency announced nearly $1.535 billion in infrastructure grants through the Department’s Infrastructure for Rebuilding America (INFRA) program.
“While I’m glad to see projects in select parts of the country get the funding they deserve, I’m disappointed to see that major highway projects in the Northeast, like the I-95 project in Delaware, did not get any federal funding,” said Senator Carper. “I’ve said before that infrastructure has the potential to elicit bipartisan support here in Congress, but this round of awards, unfortunately, seems partisan. President Trump made big promises on the campaign trail when it came to infrastructure, but the awards that have been proposed leave major gaps in addressing regional and national priorities, such as reducing congestion and improving safety on the Northeast I-95 corridor. It will remain a top priority for me to work with the Trump Administration to secure the funding Delaware needs for this project.”
More than 1.5 billion tons of freight per year is carried by trucks originating in Northeast states, traveling to destinations around the country and more than 27,000 trucks per day are carried on the I-95 corridor. Delaware’s Department of Transportation applied for a grant to rehabilitate the part of I-95 within the Wilmington area. Specifically, the project would repair nineteen bridges, improve pavements and ramps, and help address bottleneck congestion. In addition to the lack of funding for Delaware, the I-95 corridor that runs between Washington, DC and Boston has four of the top ten truck bottlenecks -- none of which were awarded funds, despite applications.
Prior to the grant announcement, Senator Carper joined a request for a bipartisan briefing on the Department of Transportation’s grant selection process for the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, and the Senate Commerce Committee. The Department of Transportation has yet to acknowledge the request from Congress.