$1 million for Radio Road extension added to transportation bill
Sandlin says money would help ease traffic congestion

Kerry Craig | News-Telegram Assistant Editor

March 26, 2004 -- Transportation enhancement in Sulphur Springs and Hopkins County came a step closer late Thursday when the U.S. House Transportation Committee approved $1 million in federal funds that U.S. Rep. Max Sandlin requested in the new 6-year transportation authorization bill to ease congestion on Radio Road.

"Investment in our nation's transportation infrastructure is critical for economic growth. That's why throughout my tenure in Congress I've worked hard to direct transportation funding to East Texas," said Sandlin, who represents the 1st congressional district in East Texas. "Over the last few months I've worked closely with my colleagues on the Transportation Committee to ensure that the needs of East Texas are met. I'm pleased that the Committee approved $1 million to help ease traffic congestion along Radio Road in Sulphur Springs."

The funds for Sulphur Springs are included in the $275 billion transportation bill that was later approved by the House and Senate. The legislation authorizes federal funds for transportation projects over the next six years.

The money would be used to extend Radio Road from Interstate 30 to State Highway 11 at FM 2560.

"The city and the county are going to have to work out the plans for this money," said Hopkins County Judge Cletis Millsap. "These are monies that we cannot raise locally with taxes, and we have to look at some of those federal dollars we pay to the federal government to make their way back into Hopkins County."

Cost estimates for the extension of Radio Road are about $4.8 million. A request for funding assistance on the project was submitted to Sandlin more than a year ago, according to Millsap.

Judge Millsap, Sulphur SpringsMayor Brad Burgin, City Council Member Lydia Bryant and City Manager Marc Maxwell are planning to go to Washington, D.C., in late April to seek additional money for transportation, including the proposed Radio Road extension.

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