Mainers on Tuesday approved a pair of bond proposals for transportation improvement projects and to boost high-speed internet.

Combined, the proposals represented $120 million in long-term borrowing, with the bulk being for transportation projects.

All told, more than 100 organizations, towns, nonprofits, community organizations and businesses were backing Question 1, which calls for $15 million to improve access to high speed internet in Maine. It will be matched with an additional $30 million.

David Farmer, a consultant on Question 1, said people who’ve been working at home because of the coronavirus now understand the importance of high-speed internet that many rural communities lack.

Question 2 focused on a $105 million bond issue for highways, bridges, harbor and freight project. There will be be a match of $275 million.

Maine Transportation Commissioner Bruce Van Note had urged Mainers to approve the bond proposal to shore up critical infrastructure.

With gas tax revenue declining because of reduced travel during the coronavirus pandemic, the bonds will mean the difference between building or canceling projects, Van Note said.


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