New MoDOT Plan Would Cut 1200 Jobs

7 years 5 months 2 weeks ago Wednesday, May 04 2011 May 4, 2011 Wednesday, May 04, 2011 2:41:00 PM CDT May 04, 2011 in News
By: Mike Andreani
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JEFFERSON CITY - MoDOT Director Kevin Keith presented a plan Wedneday to cut MoDOT's budget, and with it, 1200 jobs. The plan would also close 135 MoDOT facilities and three district offices, including the one in Macon. Citizens from the three districts set to lose their office's spoke out against the plan.

"These cuts are not something we want to make, but it's about survival," Keith told the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission.

The cuts that will take place over the next five years will save an estimated $512 million in that time and then $117 million every following year. Most of people who spoke out against the plan acknowledged the difficult task before MoDOT of trying to save money.

"I don't envy the position you're in," Macon County Presiding Commissioner Alan Wyatt said. "But you need to find a way to not take away entire offices from individual communities and instead spread out the burden."

Macon City Administrator Allan Muncy also spoke for the Macon contingent. He said that closing the Macon office won't just affect that city, but also surrounding towns like Kirksville and New Cambria.

"Taking away that office and those 80 jobs will decimate an area like Macon," Muncy said. "It will hurt the economy, the schools, home values, everything will hurt if the proposed plan goes through."

But Keith insists the plan is necessary and the cuts are even across the state.

"Of the ten current districts, this plan would actually take the most jobs from Jefferson City, about 300 total," Keith said.

Now the commission will have a month to consider the proposal and any comments citizens provide at community meetings MoDot will hold around the state before making its final decision June 3.

Click here to view the proposal, the commission's news conference and the proposed district map.

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