Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT) Secretary Craig Thompson joined Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) Secretary Randy Romanski at a farm near Monroe in Green County to highlight strategic transportation investments in rural Wisconsin communities.
“Agriculture and transportation go hand-in-hand in Wisconsin. Without a quality network of roads and bridges, a cornerstone of our state’s economy will not thrive,” WisDOT Secretary Thompson said. “I’m proud to join DATCP Secretary Romanski to showcase the state’s efforts to invest in our communities and put funding where it’s needed most. We remain committed to making strategic investments to benefit our agriculture partners and continue to grow that industry.”
Governor Evers’ budget shows historic transportation investments for quality infrastructure in all corners of the state. The recent budget includes $100 million for the Local Road Improvement Program. It also includes $150 million for the newly created Agricultural Road Improvement Program. WisDOT continues to invest in the Harbor Assistance Program to fund harbor improvements. One of those harbor improvements is the new agricultural loading facility at Port of Milwaukee.
Since 2019, WisDOT has fixed more than 5,800 miles of roads and nearly 1,600 bridges throughout the state. Funding of $1.65 billion will be directed to WisDOT programs specifically for local road and bridge projects through Federal Fiscal Year 2026. This total doubles the funding to local road and bridge structures. Additionally, General Transportation Aids supply another $500 million annually to help address transportation needs.
“Wisconsin’s $104.8 billion agriculture industry depends on sound infrastructure, as do consumers of their products,” DATCP Secretary Romanski said. “Governor Evers and the legislature have prioritized investments in Wisconsin’s roads and bridges that support commerce throughout the state. From farm gate to dinner plate, infrastructure funding impacts every producer in the state, retailer of Wisconsin goods, and consumer of agricultural products.”
Wisconsin is home to 64,100 farms on 14.2 million acres. Annually, Wisconsin agriculture provides 435,700 jobs or 11.8% of the state’s employment. Wisconsin exported a record high $4.22 billion of agricultural and food products to 142 countries in 2022. That is more than 9% of Wisconsin’s total export value.
Most agricultural freight in Wisconsin is moving over our roadways in trucks. WisDOT continues to invest in transportation infrastructure that will help agriculture and all of Wisconsin’s freight-dependent industries.