"Twenty-five percent of Minnesota's bridges and 28 percent of North Dakota's bridges are older than their designed life span of 50 years... Across the United States, one bridge in nine needs to be replaced." Federal funds are available once a bridge scores a sufficiency rating of less than 50 (out of one hundred.) In the Grand Forks area, aging bridges pose a problem for farmers who can't move new, heavy farm machinery across them to their farms. Another issue is the fact that even though federal funds are available for as much as 80 percent of the cost of a replacement bridge, often poor counties have trouble paying the balance.
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