Lawmakers have given the green light to spending $1.1 billion to fix roads and bridges across Illinois. Shovel-ready projects and roads with craterous potholes will move up the list of construction projects, which will be funded by purchasing bonds. The state can do that because it has finally made a dent in paying off bonds purchased 15 years ago as part of the Illinois First program.

State Rep. David Reis (R-Sainte Marie) conceded the capital plan won’t do a ton for his district – but it’s not all about his district.

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“Projects that were on the list got moved up, some projects that may have not been in the one-year program this year are probably going to get moved into to that,” said Reis. “It helps the whole state.”

Lawmakers voting against the plan were skeptical of how the list of projects was compiled – fearing it was based on politics as opposed to need.

(Copyright WBGZ Radio /