Strickland signs $10B transportation budget

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - A higher speed limit for trucks takes effect on Ohio interstate highways in 90 days under the transportation budget signed by Gov. Ted Strickland.

The governor put his signature on a 2-year, nearly $10 billion transportation spending plan at 11:30 p.m. Wednesday, hours after it passed the Ohio House and Senate. The budget contains about $2 billion in federal economic stimulus money.

The measure will allow truck drivers to push the pedal to up to 65 mph on the state's interstates, instead of the current truck speed limit of 55 mph.

The budget also will let the state seek federal funds to launch passenger rail service connecting Ohio's major cities.

And, the legislation makes extended unemployment benefits available to an estimated 35,000 Ohioans.

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