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As you may know, the Agency of Transportation (VTrans) was without an approved Transportation Bill until the legislature adjourned on September 25. Earlier in the summer, no consensus forecast for this state fiscal year was available and VTrans and the legislature were not able to commit to the funding needed for grant awards as there was not a clear understanding of available resources.

Considering the continuing forecast of decreased revenues this state fiscal year and understanding that the process of awarding and contracting with towns for Class II Town Highway and Structures grants would take time and would not likely result in the construction of any projects this season, a decision was made and supported by the legislature that no grants will be awarded in SFY21 for these programs.

With all towns statewide facing potential budgetary impacts, VTrans and the legislature jointly agreed that it would be more appropriate to provide supplemental TH Aid funding in the amount of $7 million to support ALL towns, while taking a one-year pause in awarding the town highway grants. Towns that were in the queue to receive these grants this year will be moved forward to next year, retaining their place in the award queue. The supplemental aid to towns has been distributed based on the current formula for Town Highway Aid.

Meanwhile, grant awards will be moving forward for the Better Roads Program. If your town had submitted an application for funding, you should soon hear soon if your proposed project will be funded.

Questions? Please contact Municipal Assistance Bureau Director Sue Scribner at sue.scribner@vermont.gov.