JEFFERSON CITY, MO - The Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission voted to adopt a plan it says will make the Missouri Department of Transportation a smaller agency in order to provide more funding for road and bridge projects. The Commission said the plan will be fully implemented by 2013.
In a resolution, the six commission members adopted a plan that calls for reducing MoDOT's staff size by 1,200, closing 131 facilities, and selling more than 740 pieces of equipment. The Commission’s news release said this plan will have saved $512M by 2015.
The final plan calls for MoDOT to maintain a presence in the three areas where the department will close district offices, which include Macon, Joplin, and Willow Springs. About 70 to 80 employees will remain in each of the areas under the direction of an area engineer who the Commission said will lead a team of engineering, operations, maintenance, and support staff. The remaining complexes in the three locations will be called district regional offices.
The Commission listed a number of additional changes related to this plan. The first is to extend the date to make staffing changes by three months, from Dec. 31, 2012 to March 31, 2013, to allow more time for attrition and transfers to achieve employee reductions.
Next, the boundaries of the new seven districts will be adjusted to balance MoDOT's workload and coordinate with regional planning commission boundaries. There are 23 regional planning commissions in Missouri that coordinate local issues related to regional planning and development. The plan also calls for keeping open maintenance facilities in New Cambria, Nashua, Seymour, Ellsinore, and Puxico and closing a maintenance facility in Fordland.
Lastly, the plan calls for moving the St. Clair area engineer office to Festus and merging the Camdenton area engineer office with the maintenance and traffic facility in Osage Beach.
More information, including the complete plan, maps of the new MoDOT districts, and a list of facility closures, can be found at www.modot.org.