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Senator Doug Whitsett Oregon State Capitol
Oregon Transportation Commission Approves ConnectOregon Project List  
Senator Whitsett Strengthens Economy, Creates Jobs   7/19/06

Salem – The Oregon Transportation Commission removed the final hurdle to new Oregon jobs and a stronger economy on Wednesday.  The commission approved a list of projects to be funded by Oregon’s latest investment in transportation, ConnectOregon.  Senator Doug Whitsett (R-Klamath Falls), a supporter of ConnectOregon during the 2005 legislative session, announced four local projects that are on the list to be funded.    “One of my biggest priorities is investing in infrastructure that will create jobs in eastern Oregon,” said Whitsett.

“ConnectOregon does just that.”  Senator Whitsett served on the Senate Transportation Committee that authored ConnectOregon.    Forty-four projects were approved representing all five transportation regions of the state.  Local projects include: Railroad/Freight Depots’ Economic Redevelopment Project in the city of Prineville Jet Factory Service Center in the City of Klamath Falls Chemult Train Station Welcome Center Redmond Municipal Airport Terminal Expansion Attached is a complete list of approved projects.   “These projects are specific and targeted towards moving freight around Oregon,” said Whitsett.  “They are going to create construction jobs at the outset, and over the long term they will support growth in local businesses that can now get more products to buyers faster.”   

 ConnectOregon was passed by the 2005 Oregon legislature and represents a $100 million investment in a variety of transportation modes focused on moving freight through Oregon.  The money comes from lottery backed bonds.  ConnectOregon is the first transportation legislation to focus on projects that are not eligible for funding from the State Highway Fund, such as airport projects, marine and port projects, rail and public transportation.    Applications for project funding were taken by the Department of Transportation from December 14, 2005 to February 17, 2006.  Consultants, the public and stakeholders reviewed the submissions.  A Consensus Committee sent forty-four suggested projects to Oregon Transportation Commission for approval.  Implementation of the projects begins immediately.  ###      





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