Infrastructure in Oil Country Getting More Funding | VideoChris Williams | 12/5/2012
A large majority of that money is coming to oil country, and that`s something people in Williston are excited about. Northwest North Dakota has taken a step forward, when it comes to infrastructure. But one truck driver says he would still like to see a few more improvements made.
"Road signs so you can see the road signs. So you can see what`s happening with the roads. The curves, down slopes, so we will be able to read what`s going on," said truck driver Dedrick Dock
To help further improve the roads in oil country, Dalrymple set aside $142 million for county and township roads, but that`s just the beginning.
"The oil impact grants. $214 million comes up from $130 million in the last biennium. That`s a huge issue to those of us up there who need water, sewer, roads, streets, emergency services, those types of things," said Williston Mayor Ward Koeser.
This money will be a one time investment in infrastructure and not a continuous flow of money. A portion of the impact grant will focus on making roads safer.
"Some people just don`t look in their mirror or whatever, when they go around pot holes, but if you can keep more up keep you`d be better off," said truck driver Jared Weber.
Maybe one of the most exciting investments the Governor is ready to make is the $300 million he plans to use on expanding some two lane highways to four lanes. One of the first on the list, the road connecting Williston and Watford City.
"That`s a life saver, that`s really a life saver. We`ve been wanting that for a number of years, and they`ve talked about that. Now to have the money to start moving on that direction, will literally save lives," said Koeser.
Even truck drivers are looking forward to Highway 85 becoming four lanes.
"That would be lovely. Four lanes would be good because you got cars coming, and they behind you, you can`t go that fast in your truck cause you`re loaded. If you got four lanes then the other cars can go on about their business, they won`t be interfering with the trucks," Dock added.
The oil and gas tax distribution for oil counties will be $520 million.