Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Private funding for toll roads? This afternoon the Turnpike Authority voted to look into private funding. The loan will fund what's known as a gap between traditional funding and tolls to pay for the pay to ride road.

The Authority was looking to lawmakers for the money but they are not willing to give it yet. The House was particularly against an increase in registration fees to fund the funding.

Turnpike top dog David Joyner says the private funding is like a second mortgage. The question the Authority has to answer is, is the interest in the long run less than the future cost of construction if they wait.

Joyner said it could take 3-4 months to see if the private funding is a viable option. The Authority only agreed to the idea if the state maintained control of the projects and toll rates.

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