Madison, Wis. – A large coalition of Legislative Republicans circulated legislation for co-
sponsorship which would fundamentally alter the way the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (DOT) delivers, finances, and administers state highway projects. This reform package will result in significant savings to taxpayers which is a must-have component of a long-term path to fund Wisconsin roads.
The audit released earlier this year confirmed that our DOT suffers from years of mismanagement. Rep. Sanfelippo said, “This bill will restore taxpayer confidence in an agency that has strayed from the sound fiscal and good-government principles we expect.”
“After demonstrating a poor use of taxpayer dollars, substantial reform is essential at the DOT,” said Sen. Kapenga. “These reforms have been proven around the country to save significant money and deliver projects in a more efficient and effective manner. It is part of what is needed to help get the agency back on track.”
The bill introduces a design-build-finance model which is a common delivery method employed by other states to realize significant reductions in construction costs and completion times on road projects. The bill also contains structural reforms to the DOT and related agencies including: repeal of prevailing wage, “fed swap,” referendum requirements for roundabouts and local wheel tax, and an outside audit of DOT operations.
Hutton added, “As with most government agencies, the issue is one of spending not funding. This legislation rightly addresses several critical areas of fiscal and operational reform within the DOT.”
Sen. Craig stated, “These are necessary changes that together can realize significant savings and result in more road per dollar without raising taxes.”