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Colorado Secures $11.6 Million in Initial Emergency Relief Funding to Reopen I-70

August 11, 2021

Rep. Lauren Boebert helped secure $11.6 million from the Department of Transportation in initial Emergency Relief for Federal-aid Highways to help reopen I-70 as quickly and as safely as possible.

Rep. Lauren Boebert stated: “I applaud the Department of Transportation for quickly responding to our bipartisan request for $11.6 million in emergency relief to reopen I-70 as quickly and as safely as possible. This is a great first step, and we expect even more federal resources to be on the way in the near future to authorize getting I-70 reopened quickly and reimbursing Colorado for the significant expenditures involved with the mudslides that have closed this important federal interstate. I put Colorado first and will continue to work closely with CDOT, Governor Polis, and the entire delegation to reopen I-70.”

Background:

Recently, mudslides caused severe damage to I-70, the main corridor connecting Colorado’s Western Slope with the Front Range. Colorado Department of Transportation officials estimated that it would take several weeks to clear just one lane of traffic going each direction on the highway. The full support of the federal government is necessary to assist efforts to get I-70 reopened.

On Saturday, Rep. Boebert joined the entire bipartisan and bicameral Colorado congressional delegation in sending a letter to the Department of Transportation requesting assistance from the Federal Highway Administration’s Emergency Relief Program to respond to the Glenwood Canyon mudslides that damaged Interstate 70. In response, the Department of Transportation granted 11.6 million in initial Emergency Relief for Federal-aid Highways to go to reopening I-70 and potentially could provide up to $116 million per the delegation and Governor’s request.

Rep. Boebert is continuing to lead Colorado’s House of Representatives delegation in a draft letter calling on President Biden to approve Governor Polis’ request for a federal Stafford disaster declaration. Once the Governor has made this request the delegation letter will be sent. Once approved, this will open up even more federal funding for costs associated with reopening I-70.

Rep. Boebert has been actively monitoring the I-70 mudslides, and she received a briefing from Governor Polis and the Colorado Department of Transportation last Monday. She pledged to offer her full support and to work to secure federal disaster assistance, and she’s delivered on that promise by securing initial funding from the Department of Transportation and by continuing to lead on the emergency declaration effort.