Exchange program will streamline local transportation projects

Construction on the South Mountain Freeway in Phoenix is ongoing. ADOT has brought back its HURF Exchange program, which could be a way for Kingman to get assistance in its highway construction needs.

ADOT/Courtesy

Construction on the South Mountain Freeway in Phoenix is ongoing. ADOT has brought back its HURF Exchange program, which could be a way for Kingman to get assistance in its highway construction needs.

KINGMAN – The Arizona Department of Transportation has brought back the Highway User Revenue Fund Exchange program, which allows cities to design and build transportation projects using state funding rather than go through the federal-funding process.

According to ADOT, HURF is a collection of taxes on gas, use-fuel taxes, motor-carrier taxes, vehicle-license taxes, vehicle registration fees and miscellaneous fees. In the program, these revenues are exchanged for federal Surface Transportation Block Grant Program funds. While ADOT usually has to administer most of these federally-funded projects, governments qualifying for the program can administer the projects themselves.

“This is a win-win for the state and local communities that would otherwise have to depend on ADOT to manage their federally funded projects,” ADOT Director John Halikowski said in a press release. “Enabling local governments to administer their own projects through the HURF Exchange Program helps reduce project costs and time to completion, and allows ADOT to focus its efforts on highway projects.”

Vice Mayor Jen Miles said Kingman would be looking into its applicability.

Kingman is eligible to participate in the program since it has under 200,000 residents. The program is of relevance to Kingman, as the City is looking to embark on interchange projects at Kingman Crossing and Rattlesnake Wash (Rancho Sante Fe).

“When I first saw the notice I spoke to Alvin Stump, our ADOT engineer, and we had a good conversation about our projects,” Councilman Travis Lingenfelter said.

After discussing the potential for Kingman to participate in the program, they came to the decision that it’s too early to make a decision.

“I think all of our emphasis right now is simply to get onto the ADOT board’s five-year plan, which we’re actively working on still,” Lingenfelter said.

The Arizona Legislature authorized the HURF program in 1997, and suspended it in 2009 because of a lack of highway fund revenues.