TxDOT Momentum Up Headed into Legislative Session
Key successes following voter approval of Proposition 1, high ranking in key national report
AUSTIN – The Texas Department of Transportation is riding a wave of optimism as citizens, national transportation groups and stakeholders have noted great improvements in Texas just in time for state lawmakers to convene for the 84th Legislative session. Many have stated that transportation is a key issue for legislators in 2015, and by passing Proposition 1 with an 80 percent approval, voters have entrusted TxDOT with the job of addressing congestion and keeping our roads safe.
Texas has been recognized outside the state as having one of the best-performing highway systems for the money spent per mile. According to the Reason Foundation’s 21st Annual Report on The Performance of State Highway Systems, Texas claims the spotlight as the top state with the lowest administrative costs per mile out of the 10 largest states (view infographic). Additionally, Texas was ranked 11th for its highway system's overall performance, despite having a population greater than the top 10 scoring states combined (view table).
“These stellar rankings are a testament to the quality of work exhibited each and every day by the men and women at the Texas Department of Transportation and their selfless service to our state,” said TxDOT Executive Director LtGen Joe Weber, USMC (Ret). “Now that Texans have made it abundantly clear that transportation is an essential priority through the passage of Proposition 1, the additional funds will help us address some major roadway needs to keep our citizens and commerce moving.”
TxDOT also is on its way to achieving several goals to run more efficiently, striving to be a “best-in-class” agency. So far the agency is on track to generate more than $100 million in cost savings and efficiencies required in HB 1 by the 83rd Legislature. The agency has also upgraded outdated IT and finance systems to better serve taxpayers and save millions in the future. The department has been recognized with some distinguished national honors including construction of the 7th Street Bridge in Fort Worth and progress on the Grand Parkway in Houston. Finally, last summer, TxDOT achieved a remarkable 92 percent satisfaction rating in a customer service survey performed by the Texas Legislative Council.
In addition, TxDOT is delivering on all highway projects through Comprehensive Development Agreements (CDAs) as authorized by the Texas Legislature. CDAs are used to develop, design and build large road projects where the private sector shares and/or assumes risk of the project resulting in quicker completion.
“People all over are seeing the incredible work the TxDOT team is achieving,” said Chairman Ted Houghton, Texas Transportation Commission. “In my time on the Commission, I have never seen the scale of work achieved and the quality in which our projects have been delivered. As we strive to be good stewards of taxpayer dollars, we are grateful our efficiencies and best practices are being noted across the nation.”