N.C. House Approves Transportation Funds to Cover Department’s Overspending, Adds Accountability Measures

Raleigh, N.C. – The state House of Representatives approved tens of millions dollars in additional funding for the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) on Thursday to cover cash flow shortfalls caused by overspending at the agency. 

Senate Bill 356 DOT Cash and Accountability provides additional funding necessary for NCDOT to meet its financial obligations after overspending its budget by hundreds of millions of dollars, according to an independent analysis conducted by international consulting firm McKinsey & Company.

The state is facing work stoppages on hundreds of transportation projects and layoffs of potentially thousands of workers as a result of the NCDOT overspending.

To prevent further overspending at NCDOT, the bill includes strict accountability measures like cash balance reporting requirements, a new review by the State Auditor, and mandates that the department seek federal disaster reimbursements as quickly as possible.

S.B. 356 includes $64 million for a new Disaster Fund at NCDOT, a $90 million loan forgiveness for the department, $100 million of additional authority for Build N.C. bonds, and another $36 million of disaster relief appropriations.

The bill will permit NCDOT to resume suspended projects, said Rep. John Torbett (R-Gaston), a co-chair of the state House Committee on Transportation Appropriations.

“This bill meets immediate transportation funding needs and improves state policy to help North Carolina keep up with the demands of our growing counties for the long-term,” Rep. Torbett said Thursday. 

“Our state is in great financial condition thanks to the work of this General Assembly and we are fortunate to have available funds to meet these transportation needs today.”

State House Speaker Tim Moore (R-Cleveland) said the bill is the result of collaborative work in the General Assembly to assist the department with its shortfall.

“While we have concerns about how the Department of Transportation arrived at its shortfall, this General Assembly is prepared to meet the immediate needs of storm victims in North Carolina and to support infrastructure funding for our state’s rapid population and economic growth,” Speaker Moore said.