Highway bond-doggle unlikely, now let’s stop toll roads

By: - June 9, 2008 9:22 am

 The prospects for a transportation bond this session look dimmer and dimmer. A weekend AP story quoted House Speaker Joe Hackney saying he doubts that there will even be a discussion of a transportation bond before lawmakers adjourn.

The 21st Century Transportation Committee recommended that lawmakers put a bond of at least $1 billion on the November ballot to speed up the construction of highway projects. Thankfully, wiser heads are prevailing, pointing out that it makes more sense to wait until next year when the new governor and Board of Transportation are in place.

It also makes sense to wait until public confidence is restored in DOT before borrowing billions more for it to (mis)manage. Now if we can just get lawmakers to give up on building tolls roads this session too. Stephen Jackson with the N.C. Budget and Tax Center recently laid out the case against charging more people to drive here on The Progressive Pulse.

People paying four dollars a gallon for gas shouldn't have to pay extra to get to work. Not to mention that the money to build the toll road comes from the General Fund that ought to be helping struggling families with affordable housing and health care, not creating a big brotherish, high-tech, selective highway tax.

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Chris Fitzsimon

Chris Fitzsimon, Founder and Executive Director of N.C. Policy Watch, writes the Fitzsimon File, delivers a radio commentary broadcast on WRAL-FM and hosts "News and Views," a weekly radio news magazine that airs on multiple stations across North Carolina. [email protected] 919-861-2066