QUORUM CALL

A bill that would require DOT to account for inflation in future road project cost estimates passed the Senate today on a voice vote.

The DOT bill, from the Joint Legislative Audit Committee, were first recommended by the Legislative Audit Bureau following its January 2017 report on the state highway program.

Sen. Rob Cowles, who is a co-chair of the audit committee, said the bill would “take a significant step in helping us resolve some of our problems.”

The legislation passed with two amendments from Sen. Jerry Petrowski, R-Marathon. The first tweaks a requirement specifying which legislative bodies DOT would annually report project updates to. The second amendment throws out a construction-manager general contractor provision from the bill. The provision would have let DOT use the hired contractor in three highway improvement projects before July 1, 2021, similar to an item the Joint Finance Committee removed from Walker’s budget.

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