Graham requests full $15 million needed for I-73 right-of-way acquisition in Horry County

Published: Jul. 8, 2021 at 5:40 PM EDT
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HORRY COUNTY, S.C. (WMBF) – State and local leaders may not have to shell out extra money to help with I-73 funding.

U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham announced on Thursday that he has submitted funding requests for South Carolina infrastructure and urban development projects.

The funding requests include the full $15 million that is needed for Horry County to complete the right-of-way acquisition for I-73, which once completed, would connect the Grand Strand to I-95.

Proponents of the I-73 project said it will bring 29,000 jobs to the Grand Strand and Pee Dee.

Originally, Graham said that he would request $12 million in federal funding, and state and local officials would be responsible for the remaining $3 million. But the senator said after discussions with Senate Appropriations officials, the local match is not required for the funding stream. Therefore, he increased his request to cover the full amount.

It is the first time since 2010 that members have been able to put in specific requests like this, called an earmark. It’s not clear at this point on when funding could be approved.

In the meantime, the senator said additional funding requests will be announced in the coming days and weeks.

Back in June, Horry County Council sent a list to Graham’s office of projects in need of federal funding. The I-73 right-of-way acquisition was on that list, along with the Augusta Plantation Interchange at Highway 31 and Carolina Bays Parkway Northern Extension.

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