JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — New funds from the Mississippi Lottery are helping to lower a backlog in the state’s road maintenance projects and have aided in the repaving of more than 250 miles of highway across the state, the Mississippi Department of Transportation said.
Officials said the roughly $80 million in lottery funds helped the Mississippi Transportation Commission put a priority on pavement restoration, focusing on upgrades to aging infrastructures.
“We don’t gamble on safety. MDOT wasted no time putting these funds to use and awarded numerous projects throughout the state, many are already underway,” said Commissioner Tom King, chair, of the Mississippi Transportation Commission. “MDOT is very appreciative of the legislature for designating a portion of the lottery proceeds to Mississippi’s maintenance needs.”
As of December, a total of 281 miles have been or will be repaved, and so far, a total of $73.4 million has been awarded for these projects statewide.
“Adequate funding is the winning ticket for a safe and efficient transportation infrastructure. These paving projects make our highways safer and make Mississippi a better place to live and work,” said Commissioner Willie Simmons of the central district.
“Paving projects help ensure the people and businesses of Mississippi have efficient and reliable infrastructure for travel and transport of goods and services,” said Commissioner John Caldwell, of the northern district. “This money isn’t just going into Mississippi’s highways—it’s going to our people as well. You will begin seeing the benefits of these projects soon.”