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Morgan: Bridging the gap (OPINION)

Morgan: Bridging the gap (OPINION)

The Journal Record
By: Fred Morgan  
April 26, 2019

Recently, I had the pleasure of interviewing Sen. Rob Standridge, R-Norman, and Secretary of Transportation Tim Gatz for the State Chamber’s podcast. I was pleased to learn that, at the state level, Oklahoma is making great strides in reducing the number of structurally deficient bridges and improving infrastructure.

For instance, in 2004, 17 percent of bridges were evaluated as structurally deficient, ranking Oklahoma at the bottom nationwide. Now, according to a 2019 Oklahoma Department of Transportation press release, less than 2 percent of the 6,800 total bridges on the highway system were rated structurally deficient.

This is great progress at the state level. But what about at the county level? Facing other pressing issues, it can be difficult for counties to invest in infrastructure at the same level as the state of Oklahoma.

Thankfully, there’s a program in place to bridge this gap: the County Improvements for Roads & Bridges program.

The CIRB program was created to provide dedicated revenue for counties to improve infrastructure and structurally deficient bridges. The funds from the CIRB program allow counties to pay for large, costly projects they otherwise couldn’t afford... FULL ARTICLE

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