Recovery Act Impact: Transportation

  • $400 million

  • Worcester County: $40 million

  • Oakham Bridge Betterment Project: $800K

Byron Beauregard
Byron Beauregard has something in common with the Bridge Betterment project, he worked on in Oakham: Both these jobs happened because of the stimulus program.

Beauregard works for Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) as a civil engineer in its District Three office. The Bridge Betterment project received $800K in stimulus funding to repair a structure that had been built in 1938 and was in reduced capacity.

A year ago, Beauregard was also struggling.

He had worked in construction for years and had risen first to become a project superintendent and then a construction foreman. But the recession hit his industry hard and Beauregard was laid off.

"I was unemployed for almost a full year," said Beauregard.

Byron Beauregard and coworkers at MassDOT

That was before Beauregard heard about job openings in MassDOT that were funded through the stimulus program. As Steve Romano, a senior civil engineer in MassDOT's District Three office, explained, because of the increase in transportation projects under the stimulus program, MassDOT needed additional personnel.

Beauregard was hired in November 2009. "They called and said we have a position for you," he said. "I was pretty excited." Beauregard's position has recently been upgraded to a permanent status, which, said Romano, is a good thing. "We could use as much help as we could get," he said.

Romano is referring to the many transportation

Byron Beauregard on the Oakham Bridge
projects that were funded by stimulus - the state has spent $397 million in stimulus funds on transportation projects throughout the state and $40 million in Worcester County which MassDOT's District Three roughly covers.

But for Beauregard, it all comes down to this: Now he has a job. And with his wife expecting a baby this coming May, that is a very good thing.