Central Texas mayor hopes federal infrastructure plan can help city

Published: Jul. 19, 2021 at 5:16 AM CDT
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KILLEEN, Texas (KWTX) - For weeks now, Congress has been hammering out a massive spending bill that would include infrastructure improvements. It’s a priority for President Joe Biden, but at least one local leader is showing his support.

Killeen mayor Jose Segarra joined nearly 400 other mayors from around the country and signed on to a letter urging Congress to move forward with the Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework. Mayor Segarra hopes it will help the city address some of their key concerns.

“As mayor, I always say, you know, we seem to always keep kicking this can down the road to here locally,” Segarra said. “Because our streets are in dire need of upgrades, we’ve known that for many years.”

Segarra said infrastructure has long been a priority for the city, but the issue always seems to be funding.

“What is the price tag to improve our streets, we’re looking at about 120 million,” Segarra said. “And then after the storm that added about 40 million more”

Segarra said the bill, especially if cities are given more power to make decisions about how to spend it, could really benefit Killeen. Federal money could be used to repair roads, leaving city funds for other priorities.

“My big thing has always been trying to improve our downtown area,” Segarra said. “We always come up short up funding because we have so many different priorities, even though downtown is something that we really want to happen, something good to happen.”

Segarra said while he signed on in support of the infrastructure bill, that’s all he supports.

“I draw the line and say you know what, I’m for it. As long as for infrastructure,” Segarra said. “When it comes funding all of this other stuff, you know, that’s just crazy”

The bipartisan infrastructure plan that Segarra supports is only a small part of President Biden’s larger bill he wants to see passed, which includes investments in child care and his climate agenda.

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