Roadwork Could Shut Down Across Illinois Due To Budget Impasse

By Mae Rice in News on Jun 15, 2017 2:30PM

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Roadwork across Illinois may grind to a halt at the end of June due to the continued state budget impasse, a representative for the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) announced Wednesday. IDOT will be unable to pay contractors on July 1, unless the state passes a stopgap funding measure.

IDOT has told contractors that "all construction work is to shut down on June 30," according to a statement. "Contractors will be advised to secure work zones to ensure their safety during any potential shutdown."

IDOT was in the same pickle last summer, but a stopgap state budget saved the department from a major work stoppage.

Illinois has gone almost two full years without a state budget, which has hit education funding throughout the state and generated more than $10 million in unpaid bills.

Summer is both a high-volume construction season and a vaguely ominous time to cease road repairs; just last week, IDOT released a statement warning that the heat could lead to pavement "buckling or blowing out."

IDOT's statement promises that "the safety of the traveling public will be the top priority," budget or no budget.