Some Illinois road construction projects scheduled to be completed this year could be delayed until next year because of lower-than-anticipated gas tax revenues during the coronavirus pandemic.
The State Journal Register says that State Transportation Department Secretary Omer Osman says the department hasn’t yet assessed how many projects might be pushed back due to the shortfalls in revenue.
He told lawmakers during a Senate Transportation Committee hearing Thursday that the department will prioritize projects related to safety improvements.
Osman says gas tax revenues used to fund road projects were much lower than originally projected because people are driving less during the pandemic. AAA says that demand has fluctuated over the last two months as COVID lockdowns have eased in states, but lengthy road travel has experienced sharp decline in year over year numbers.
According to the Illinois Department of Transportation, from March through June of this year, motor fuel tax revenues are down $82 million from the same period last year.