Charlotte's share of Round 1 road stimulus: $0
For Charlotte Mayor Pat McCrory, the numbers don't add up. He made that clear at last night's city council meeting. "The two areas that got the most money was New Bern, North Carolina: $64 million for an outer beltway. Fayetteville, $64.3 million. And Charlotte in the first round got 38.6 million," McCrory announced before correcting himself. "Not one of those roads is in the city of Charlotte," he added. But two of the roads fall at least partly in Mecklenburg County: Widening Route 51 from Pineville to the South Carolina border and rebuilding Highway 218 from I-485 to US 74 in Anson County. The Department of Transportation says it used the same formula for how it usually awards road projects, and this is how the chips fell. Under that formula, the Charlotte region should receive another $30 million for roads in the second round of stimulus distributions. McCrory does not want the federal money to be distributed through the equity formula, which he has repeatedly criticized for not taking congestion into account. "We're going through some very unique economic times. This is supposed to not be typical appropriations dollars," McCrory said. "And therefore I think the state should not treat this money as typical appropriations dollars from the government." McCrory wants the city council to ask the General Assembly for an amendment to exempt the federal stimulus money from the formula. He stressed money intended specifically for urban areas should not be distributed through the formula. But Mayor Pro-Tem Susan Burgess and Council members Michael Barnes and Anthony Foxx argued that could jeopardize the money already designated for the Charlotte area. Foxx said it would be unclear how to allocate the stimulus without the formula.