Idaho Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter isn't the biggest fan of the Obama administration, but Otter should be all smiles Wednesday, Aug. 22, when Obama's Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood visits Idaho. LaHood will join the governor and Idaho's congrssional delegation to unveil federal funding for the expansion of the Port of Lewiston.
Idaho is earmarked to receive $3 million in federal funding, announced Aug. 17 as part of a $500 million national bundle geared for highway, transit, rail and port projects. The U.S. Department of Transportation announced that the money was actually part of earmarks from 2003 through 2006, but was never spent. States now have to decide by Monday, Oct. 1, on how they want to spend the money.
The Port of Lewiston is a critical link from the Intermountain West, through the Snake and Columbia rivers, to the Port of Portland and the Pacific Ocean. The port recently received $1.3 million in federal grant funds to help fund a $2.9 million dock expansion project.