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Give Governor McCrory credit for proposing something big and bold, a $1 billion transportation bond issue. It sounds like a stimulus program, but that would be the kiss of death in the Republican legislature. He may find himself needing some Democratic allies.
 
He and Secretary Tata will have to answer a lot of questions: how to pay for it, can the state afford it and, of course, why these specific projects?
 
Like every Governor, McCrory promised to take politics out of transportation decisions. Here’s the definition of “politics”: a road somebody else wants. And the definition of “real need”: a road you want.
 
Speaking of needs, why was there no mention of I-95? It’s the most congested, dangerous major road in the state.
 
How can the state seriously pursue a large auto manufacturer without upgrading I-95? The first thing a big plant like that needs, especially if it’s near Rocky Mount, is access up and down the East Coast.
 
Let’s get on with it. Start your engines, warm up the road graders and load up the dump trucks.

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One comment on “McCrory’s Road Map

  1. Anonymous says:

    I am one that does give McCrory credit for wanting to take on our aging roads. And, as with all projects of this size, it’s gonna take lots and lots of money, as you’ve said, Gary. You believe it will cause problems for McCrory if he continues to push for this because he’s going to have to answer some very pointed (and important) questions. But, EVERY time these kinds of projects are being formulated, the questions you’ve put up here and many more have to be answered before going further with them.

    As far as the improvements needed on I-95, you’re so right. I’ve traveled it lately and it’s a mess. Talk about an aging infrastructure! Of course, I-95 is an interstate and some funds for it come from the Fed, but not all that much and states have the responsibility to pitch in on upkeep and expansion. I found a great site discussing this (back in 2013…but still relevant). Here’s a quote from the site:

    “In 37 of the 50 states revenues from modest toll rates would be sufficient to cover 90 percent or more of the costs associated with reconstructing and widening the Interstates. The baseline toll rates would be 3.5 cents per mile for cars and 14 cents a mile for trucks. The tolls would indexed to inflation and adjusted annually. Some states, like California, New York and Alaska, would require higher toll rates, as detailed in the study.”

    So, yeah…I’m recommending tolls on the part of I-95 that runs through NC. I’m sure that’s not all that popular, but it’s a solution and keeps people that don’t use the Interstate from having to have their already-high taxes used for that infrastructure improvement making the actual users responsible for it’s upkeep and expansion.

    Here’s the link of the site I got that quote from (no, you still can’t just click on a link here on the Front Page….sorry, y’all).

    http://reason.org/news/show/how-to-modernize-interstates

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