CHICAGO - Missouri and Illinoisyesterday signed a pact to build a new $640 million bridge across the Mississippi River, ending a more than 10-year debate that turned contentious two years ago in a dispute over how to fund the project.

Missouri Gov. Matt Blunt and Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich signed the agreement yesterday that requires Missouri to provide $88 million in state road funds for the project with Illinois contributing $313 million. Federal funding of $239 million would cover the remaining cost.

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