A bonding proposal to use anticipated future federal funds to expedite highway construction projects is expected to be introduced Monday (Feb. 28) in the Idaho Legislature. Now in draft form, the proposal probably will be introduced to the Senate state affairs committee.
The ability to use GARVEE (Grant Anticipation Revenue Vehicle) bonds is a cornerstone of Gov. Dirk Kempthorne’s “Connecting Idaho” vision that he outlined in his January State of the State address. If Legislators approve the bill, bonds would be issued against future federal revenue to compress a 30-year highway construction schedule into about 10 years.
ITD staff analyzed the potential budget and construction implications that would result from GARVEE bonding and provided the information informally to legislators. ITD Director Dave Ekern and transportation board chair Charles L. Winder have been explaining the process to a growing number of elected officials and local organizations the past month.
“ ‘Connecting Idaho,’ ” will provide the tools and the direction we need to unite citizens and communities, link businesses and stimulate the economy, open the door to Idaho’s incredible beauty and build on its limitless recreational opportunities,” Ekern said recently.
The initiative will secure a place for transportation in Idaho’s future by building on its place in history.