Highway Consolidation Proposed to allow for Funding Flexibility in Maui County
By Wendy Osher
The state Department of Transportation (DOT) will present its biennium budget request this morning to the Senate Ways and Means Committee. DOT acting director Jeffrey Chang is expected to present a request that reflects continued challenges with rising operational costs, and the impact of the state’s overall economy on the department’s revenue stream.
In the State Highway’s Division, the department is expected to propose a consolidation of Maui’s three districts into one. DOT officials say that will allow for more efficient transfer of funds, which currently takes up to two months for approval.
The change, officials say, will allow programs on Maui, Molokai and Lanai to remain autonomous, but also allow for flexibility in the management of finances when projects require additional funding during the fiscal year.
The budget request also highlights economic impacts and alternatives at the state’s 15 airport facilities and 10 harbors.