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U.S. Rep. Bill Owens (D-Plattsburgh)
U.S. Rep. Bill Owens (D-Plattsburgh)

Owens votes for highway funds

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North Country Congressman Bill Owens voted yesterday in favor of a short-term spending plan that would replenish the national Highway Trust Fund.

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Reported by

Brian Mann
Adirondack Bureau Chief

The bipartisan measure passed the House.

It would pump just under 11 billion dollars into the road repair program — enough money to last through next spring.  

In a statement, Owens described the highway trust fund as "a critical pillar" supporting industries in the North Country.
The highway fund has run short of money in large part because it is paid for by a tax on gasoline that isn't adjusted for inflation and hasn't been raised since 1993.  

According to the Cuomo administration, the Highway Trust Fund is needed for 49 different projects planned across the North Country region.

That includes roadwork planned for Tupper Lake and four construction projects on the Northway. 

The temporary funding still needs approval of the US Senate. 

Unless it clears Congress, federal officials say some roadwork project could be canceled this summer.

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