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Feds Fast-Track Irene Road Repair Money [AUDIO]

William Thomas Cain, Getty Images

At the end of last summer, Jersey was belted by hurricane Irene and tropical storm Lee. Many roads and bridges were damaged by the storms, and the state spent millions to make repairs – but now comes word the Feds are fast-tracking reimbursement money.

Jersey Department of Transportation spokesman Joe Dee says “we’re expecting to hear from the FHWA (the Federal Highway Administration) as early as next week on an allocation of approximately 89-point-2 million dollars – that will be money that we will be able to draw down upon when we submit specific documentation for specific repair projects.”

He says the DOT has been working with the counties for some time on the reimbursement paperwork, and “when we submit the documentation, FHWA reviews it, and if they give us the authorization then we can draw down from that allocation.”

Dee adds the damage we saw from the hurricane and a few other strong storms in late summer “included wash-outs – which is when an embankment to a road just washed away entirely and the road starts to crumble, sink holes, guide rails were just mangled and just swept away by flooded waters, bridges suffered some damage – erosion around the supports of the bridges…we’re very pleased with this – I mean this is a quicker than usual in terms of an announcement from the FHWA in terms of an allocation…we encourage Counties to work as expeditiously as possible to get us the documentation – and we’re doing the same on our end.”

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