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Federally funded projects to create estimated 3,170 jobs



The state, together with the four counties, will receive $246 million in federal stimulus funds to improve transportation infrastructure, which will add more than 3,000 jobs.  

“We are the first state to finalize our project list and begin utilizing the federal stimulus funds,” said Brennon Morioka, director of the state Department of Transportation. “This was made possible because federal, state, and county officials were able to sit down at the same table and work efficiently and effectively so that we can save and create jobs.”

The list of state and county projects that will move forward using the federal funds made available through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) includes:

*  $125.7 million for state and county highway improvement projects

* $76.5 million for improvements to Kahului Airport and Honolulu International Airport

* $43.8 million for county bus transit systems improvements

The state estimates the federally funded transportation projects will generate 3,170 jobs statewide in the construction industry and other related sectors. The Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism estimates that for every $1 million in stimulus money invested, 12.9 jobs will be created or preserved.

The federal stimulus funds will further support Hawaii’s efforts to modernize the state’s infrastructure, including the Airports Modernization Plan launched in 2005 and the Highways Modernization Plan launched this January.  The federal funds will also augment the $1.8 billion capital improvement project (CIP) plan unveiled by Gov. Linda Lingle in December, whose goal is to start more than 1,500 construction projects within the next 18 months.

“Because of our ongoing focus on investing in the repair and modernization of Hawaii’s infrastructure, especially our critical transportation systems, Hawaii is well positioned to take maximum advantage of the federal stimulus package and create jobs for our residents,” Lingle said. 

The funding for the county highway projects is being coordinated through the state Department of Transportation, which is serving as the lead conduit for transportation projects statewide.

In assessing the potential road projects, state and county officials considered each project’s timeline, including if the project could go out to bid in the next few months and whether an environmental assessment would be needed.  

In addition, it was important to ensure the projects were fairly distributed geographically, including in economically distressed zones and areas where the project would have an impact in creating jobs.

Transparency and Accountability

As part of the requirement to ensure transparency and accountability of how taxpayer dollars are being spent on the economic recovery, each project had to meet five crucial objectives.  

The five primary objectives outlined for federal agencies and the nation’s governors, who are serving as the conduit for funds distributed to their states, ensure that:

* Recovery funds are awarded and distributed in a prompt, fair, and reasonable manner;

* The recipients and uses of all recovery funds are transparent to the public, and that the public benefits of these funds are reported clearly, accurately, and in a timely manner;

* Recovery funds are used for authorized purposes and every step is taken to prevent instances of fraud, waste, error and abuse;

* Projects funded under the recovery legislation avoid unnecessary delays and cost overruns; and,

* Programs meet specific goals and targets, and contribute to improved performance on broad economic indicators.


Hawaii will receive $125.7 million for state and county highway improvement projects.  The state will use $63 million for 10 separate projects on Kauai, O‘ahu, Hawaii, Maui and Molokai. The counties will divide $64,920,000, with Hawaii County receiving $35.6 million; Oahu receiving $19.2 million; Kauai receiving $6 million and Maui County receiving $4.12 million.

The state projects on the map include $11 million for repairing or replacing parts of steel bridges along Hawaii Belt Road.


The Hawaii County projects total $35.6 million and include:

* Construction of the four-lane, limited access Ane Keohokalaoloe Highway between Palani Road and Hina Lani Street

* Construction of the first increment of the five-mile multi-use Waimea Trails and Greenway


The state Department of Transportation’s Airports Division will receive approximately $76.5 million in federal stimulus funds, which will help advance the state’s six-year Airports Modernization Plan.

The bulk of the funds, $61.5 million, will be used to install Explosive Detection Systems (EDS) at Kahului Airport ($18.5 million) and Honolulu International Airport ($43 million) to screen and process checked baggage. 

Hawaii was selected by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) as one of 11 states that will share in $700 million in federal stimulus funds for the procurement and installation of the EDS nationwide. 

“The federal money will allow us to leverage our funds for other state airport projects that are already part of our Airports Modernization Plan,” Lingle said.

Bus Transit

The four counties will share $43.8 million in Federal Transit Administration funding to improve public bus transit systems, including transit center improvements, bus shelter projects and bus purchases.  The City and County of Honolulu will receive $40.9 million.  The remaining $2.9 million will be evenly split between Maui, Hawaii and Kauai counties’ transit agencies.

— Find out more:

Governor’s site:

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