HB1475 passed out of the Senate yesterday and we are hoping that the House will concur with the changes. This bill creates the ADD fund spelled out in the title and it is currently $10 million for loans and up to 25% of that in grants per biennium. It started out at $150 million; the House Approps cut it to $5 million and the Senate to $10 million. The Conference Committee has not yet been assigned.
SB2208 is the big interim water study which did have a Conference Committee today. They decided to include irrigation and water permitting in the study. It will be a large committee of citizens involved in water such as Water Resource Districts, engineers, highway engineers; the State Water Commission has a designee, two Ag groups appointed by the Ag Commissioner, amongst others as well as several legislators. With about 20 people involved, it will be a big study with much communication needed. Senator Larry Luick indicated that he had been tapped to chair this effort.
We have been told repeatedly that legislators will find money for township roads. Most likely would be an amendment to HB1015, the Office of Management and Budget bill that is usually called the Christmas tree bill because ornaments such as township road money are often hung on it. If you want to help with township roads, at this point your Senator and Representatives can be contacted to support the inclusion of money for that bill.