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Come January there will be increasing pressure on TDOT to get into business with private toll road companies.
Two years ago lawmakers took away that authority. What a difference two years — at least these last two years — makes. The move fits a rough pattern we are seeing all over the country. As funding for transporation drops like a stone along with state, regional and local income, various entities are opening up Pandora’s Road Box. The need is overwhelming and a variety of possible sources are being dreamed up.
My guess is that whatever comes to be will stay in force for years to come. If TDOT starts making these deals it will be making them for a long, long time. When the good times roll again it is extremely unlikely we’ll see any agencies voluntarily giving up the extra dollars. Once bitten.
Check out the TDOT and private toll roads story from the Dallas Morning News.