Leaders from across the Permian Basin have sent a letter to Texas Governor Greg Abbott asking for more money to expand and build roads. The region’s population is rapidly expanding along with its economy.
It’s estimated around 45 people move to the region each day. That means roads are packed with all kinds of traffic, that’s according to James Beauchamp, the president of the MOTRAN Alliance.
He said, “At some point, you can’t just repave existing roads. You got to build some new roads.”
MOTRAN is a nonprofit that studies and raises funds to improve infrastructure in the Midland-Odessa area. The letter the group sent to the governor’s office asks for the state to contribute about $500 million toward specific projects to expand the number of cars local roads can handle.
Beauchamp argues the region should get the money since from 2017 to 2018 alone the area’s tax revenue contributed to the state went up by about $1.5 billion.
According to him, “From a statewide perspective when you start talking about millions of dollars of additional infrastructure out here, I think something that’s important is being able to go beyond [road safety] even though we’d hope safety’s a factor.” He continued, the region needs “to be also able to make the economic case for why [additional funding for infrastructure] is warranted and justified.”
Beauchamp said the letter is meant to start a conversation about how the state can support the communities in the largest oilfield in the U.S. The governor’s office has yet to respond.